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Sample records for continuous breeding evolving

  1. Continuous Evaluation of Evolving Behavioral Intervention Technologies

    PubMed Central

    Mohr, David C.; Cheung, Ken; Schueller, Stephen M.; Brown, C. Hendricks; Duan, Naihua

    2013-01-01

    Behavioral intervention technologies (BITs) are web-based and mobile interventions intended to support patients and consumers in changing behaviors related to health, mental health, and well-being. BITs are provided to patients and consumers in clinical care settings and commercial marketplaces, frequently with little or no evaluation. Current evaluation methods, including RCTs and implementation studies, can require years to validate an intervention. This timeline is fundamentally incompatible with the BIT environment, where technology advancement and changes in consumer expectations occur quickly, necessitating rapidly evolving interventions. However, BITs can routinely and iteratively collect data in a planned and strategic manner and generate evidence through systematic prospective analyses, thereby creating a system that can “learn.” A methodologic framework, Continuous Evaluation of Evolving Behavioral Intervention Technologies (CEEBIT), is proposed that can support the evaluation of multiple BITs or evolving versions, eliminating those that demonstrate poorer outcomes, while allowing new BITs to be entered at any time. CEEBIT could be used to ensure the effectiveness of BITs provided through deployment platforms in clinical care organizations or BIT marketplaces. The features of CEEBIT are described, including criteria for the determination of inferiority, determination of BIT inclusion, methods of assigning consumers to BITs, definition of outcomes, and evaluation of the usefulness of the system. CEEBIT offers the potential to collapse initial evaluation and postmarketing surveillance, providing ongoing assurance of safety and efficacy to patients and consumers, payers, and policymakers. PMID:24050429

  2. Continuous evaluation of evolving behavioral intervention technologies.

    PubMed

    Mohr, David C; Cheung, Ken; Schueller, Stephen M; Hendricks Brown, C; Duan, Naihua

    2013-10-01

    Behavioral intervention technologies (BITs) are web-based and mobile interventions intended to support patients and consumers in changing behaviors related to health, mental health, and well-being. BITs are provided to patients and consumers in clinical care settings and commercial marketplaces, frequently with little or no evaluation. Current evaluation methods, including RCTs and implementation studies, can require years to validate an intervention. This timeline is fundamentally incompatible with the BIT environment, where technology advancement and changes in consumer expectations occur quickly, necessitating rapidly evolving interventions. However, BITs can routinely and iteratively collect data in a planned and strategic manner and generate evidence through systematic prospective analyses, thereby creating a system that can "learn." A methodologic framework, Continuous Evaluation of Evolving Behavioral Intervention Technologies (CEEBIT), is proposed that can support the evaluation of multiple BITs or evolving versions, eliminating those that demonstrate poorer outcomes, while allowing new BITs to be entered at any time. CEEBIT could be used to ensure the effectiveness of BITs provided through deployment platforms in clinical care organizations or BIT marketplaces. The features of CEEBIT are described, including criteria for the determination of inferiority, determination of BIT inclusion, methods of assigning consumers to BITs, definition of outcomes, and evaluation of the usefulness of the system. CEEBIT offers the potential to collapse initial evaluation and postmarketing surveillance, providing ongoing assurance of safety and efficacy to patients and consumers, payers, and policymakers.

  3. Boom and bust in continuous time evolving economic model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitchell, L.; Ackland, G. J.

    2009-08-01

    We show that a simple model of a spatially resolved evolving economic system, which has a steady state under simultaneous updating, shows stable oscillations in price when updated asynchronously. The oscillations arise from a gradual decline of the mean price due to competition among sellers competing for the same resource. This lowers profitability and hence population but is followed by a sharp rise as speculative sellers invade the large un-inhabited areas. This cycle then begins again.

  4. Reproductive toxicity of ethylene glycol monoethyl ether tested by continuous breeding of CD-1 mice

    SciTech Connect

    Lamb, J.C. IV; Gulati, D.K.; Russell, V.S.; Hommel, L.; Sabharwal, P.S.

    1984-08-01

    The reproductive toxicity of ethylene glycol monoethyl ether (EGEE) was evaluated in the Fertility Assessment by Continuous Breeding protocol. Both male and female CD-1 mice were given 0, 0.5, 1.0 or 2% EGEE in the drinking water and were housed as breeding pairs continuously for 14 weeks. Significant adverse effects on fertility were seen at 1 and 2% but not at 0.5%. After the continuous breeding phase of this test was completed, treated males were housed with control females and treated females with control males and fertility and reproduction were compared to the corresponding pairs of control male and control female mice. Both males and females from the 1 and 2% groups were affected. Testicular atrophy decreased sperm motility and increased abnormal sperm were noted in the treated males, but no specific anomalies were detected in the females. 7 references, 1 figure, 7 tables.

  5. Genetic Characterization of Continually Evolving Highly Pathogenic H5N6 Influenza Viruses in China, 2012–2016

    PubMed Central

    Li, Meng; Zhao, Na; Luo, Jing; Li, Yuan; Chen, Lin; Ma, Jiajun; Zhao, Lin; Yuan, Guohui; Wang, Chengmin; Wang, Yutian; Liu, Yanhua; He, Hongxuan

    2017-01-01

    H5N6 is a highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) and a zoonotic disease that causes recurring endemics in East Asia. At least 155 H5N6 outbreaks, including 15 human infections, have been reported in China. These repeated outbreaks have increased concern that the H5N6 virus may cross over to humans and cause a pandemic. In February, 2016, peafowls in a breeding farm exhibited a highly contagious disease. Post-mortem examinations, including RT-PCR, and virus isolation, confirmed that the highly pathogenic H5N6 influenza virus was the causative agent, and the strain was named A/Pavo Cristatus/Jiangxi/JA1/2016. In animal experiments, it exhibited high pathogenicity in chickens and an estimated median lethal dose in mice of ~104.3 TCID50. A phylogenetic analysis showed that JA1/2016 was clustered in H5 clade 2.3.4.4. FG594-like H5N6 virus from Guangdong Province was the probable predecessor of JA1/2016, and the estimated divergence time was June 2014. Furthermore, we found that H5N6 influenza viruses can be classified into the two following groups: Group 1 and Group 2. Group 2 influenza viruses have not been detected since the end of 2014, whereas Group 1 influenza viruses have continually evolved and reassorted with the “gene pool” circulating in south China, resulting in the rise of novel subtypes of this influenza virus. An increase in the number of its identified hosts, the expanding range of its distribution, and the continual evolution of H5N6 AIVs enhance the risk that an H5N6 virus may spread to other continents and cause a pandemic. PMID:28293218

  6. ANALYSIS OF GENOMIC DNA METHYLATION AND GENE EXPRESSION IN CHINESE CABBAGE (Brassica rapa L. ssp. pekinensis) AFTER CONTINUOUS SEEDLING BREEDING.

    PubMed

    Tao, L; Wang, X L; Guo, M H; Zhang, Y W

    2015-08-01

    Vernalization plays a key role in the bolting and flowering of Chinese cabbage (Brassica rapa L. ssp. pekinensis). Plants can switch from vegetative to reproductive growth and then bolt and flower under low temperature induction. The economic benefits of Chinese cabbage will decline significantly when the bolting happens before the vegetative body fully grows due to a lack of the edible value. It was found that continuous seedling breeding reduced the heading of Chinese cabbage and led to bolt and flower more easily. In the present study, two inbred lines, termed A161 and A105, were used as experiment materials. These two lines were subjected to vernalization and formed four types: seeds-seedling breeding once, seedling breeding twice, seedling breeding thrice and normal type. Differences in plant phenotype were compared. DNA methylation analysis was performed based on MSAP method. The differential fragments were cloned and analyzed by qPCR. Results showed that plants after seedling breeding thrice had a loosen heading leaves, elongated center axis and were easier to bolt and flower. It is suggested that continuous seedling breeding had a weaker winterness. It was observed that genome methylation level decreased with increasing generation. Four differential genes were identified, short for BraAPC1, BraEMP3, BraUBC26, and BraAL5. Fluorescent qPCR analysis showed that expression of four genes varied at different reproduction modes and different vernalization time. It is indicated that these genes might be involve in the development and regulation of bolting and flowering of plants. Herein, the molecular mechanism that continuous seedling breeding caused weaker winterness was analyzed preliminarily. It plays an important guiding significance for Chinese cabbage breeding.

  7. Bred to breed?! Implications of continuous mating on the emotional status of mouse offspring.

    PubMed

    Lerch, Sandra; Brandwein, Christiane; Dormann, Christof; Gass, Peter; Chourbaji, Sabine

    2015-02-15

    Working with mice represents a smart method to study pathophysiological mechanisms in vivo. However, using animals as model organisms also bears immense caveats. While many aspects in animal research are meanwhile standardized (e.g. nutrition, housing, health) the breeding environment remains unaddressed. Moreover, since the "production" of mice is mostly performed pragmatically, continuous mating (CM) represents a common method to boost the amount of offspring. This condition implies simultaneous pregnancy and lactation in presence of the male, which is associated with increased costs for the breeding dam. Facing the widely-accepted impact of perinatal conditions, our aim was to elucidate how CM affects emotional behaviour of mouse offspring. We therefore compared pregnant mice in CM with mice raising their pups without potentially disturbing influences. According to our hypothesis CM-deriving offspring should demonstrate increased anxiety and depression-like behaviour shaped by pre- and postnatal stress of the mother. Maternal care, i.e. nest building and pup retrieval, was analysed around delivery. To assess the emotional state of the offspring, males and females of either condition were exposed to a behavioural test battery for exploration, anxiety and fear, social and despair behaviour. In addition we analysed corticosterone as stressphysiological correlate. Our study demonstrates that CM affects the emotional phenotype regarding nearly all parameters addressed. These findings emphasize (i) the impact of the perinatal environment on stress-associated behaviour such as depression, and (ii) the need to imply perinatal conditions in the experimental design to decrease the risk of artefacts and increase the overall validity of animal studies.

  8. Peripheral oxygen transport and utilization in rats following continued selective breeding for endurance running capacity.

    PubMed

    Howlett, Richard A; Kirkton, Scott D; Gonzalez, Norberto C; Wagner, Harrieth E; Britton, Steven L; Koch, Lauren G; Wagner, Peter D

    2009-06-01

    Untrained rats selectively bred for either high (HCR) or low (LCR) treadmill running capacity previously demonstrated divergent physiological traits as early as the seventh generation (G7). We asked whether continued selective breeding to generation 15 (G15) would further increase the divergence in skeletal muscle capillarity, morphometry, and oxidative capacity seen previously at G7. At G15, mean body weight was significantly lower (P < 0.001) in the HCR rats (n = 11; 194 +/- 3 g) than in LCR (n = 12; 259 +/- 9 g) while relative medial gastrocnemius muscle mass was not different (0.23 +/- 0.01 vs. 0.22 +/- 0.01% total body weight). Normoxic (Fi(O(2)) = 0.21) Vo(2max) was 50% greater (P < 0.001) in HCR despite the lower absolute muscle mass, and skeletal muscle O(2) conductance (measured in hypoxia; Fi(O(2)) = 0.10) was 49% higher in HCR (P < 0.001). Muscle oxidative enzyme activities were significantly higher in HCR (citrate synthase: 16.4 +/- 0.4 vs. 14.0 +/- 0.6; beta-hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase: 5.2 +/- 0.2 vs. 4.2 +/- 0.2 mmol.kg(-1).min(-1)). HCR rats had approximately 36% more total muscle fibers and also 36% more capillaries in the medial gastrocnemius. Because average muscle fiber area was 35% smaller, capillary density was 36% higher in HCR, but capillary-to-fiber ratio was the same. Compared with G7, G15 HCR animals showed 38% greater total fiber number with an additional 25% decrease in mean fiber area. These data suggest that many of the skeletal muscle structural and functional adaptations enabling greater O(2) utilization in HCR at G7 continue to progress following additional selective breeding for endurance capacity. However, the largest changes at G15 relate to O(2) delivery to skeletal muscle and not to the capacity of skeletal muscle to use O(2).

  9. Evolution of Comprehensive Care, Part 3. Periodontal Treatment Continues to Evolve.

    PubMed

    Kurtzman, Gregori M; Hughes, Mary K

    2015-05-01

    Perio treatment has evolved beyond simple scaling with hand instruments. Ultrasonics and diode lasers have improved both the efficiency of treatment as well as treatment prognosis to arresting the disease process and gaining clinical attachment and decreasing pocket depth. Add to this the benefits of adjunct medicaments both at time of treatment via site placement and during routine home care by the patient, and we are able to tip treatment outcome in a more favorable direction. Periodontology has been closely linked to systemic health both as a causative agent to health issues and as a secondary site for some medical conditions. Dentistry has truly--and finally--become a part of total healthcare.

  10. Whole-genome sequencing of six dog breeds from continuous altitudes reveals adaptation to high-altitude hypoxia

    PubMed Central

    Gou, Xiao; Wang, Zhen; Li, Ning; Qiu, Feng; Xu, Ze; Yan, Dawei; Yang, Shuli; Jia, Jia; Kong, Xiaoyan; Wei, Zehui; Lu, Shaoxiong; Lian, Linsheng; Wu, Changxin; Wang, Xueyan; Li, Guozhi; Ma, Teng; Jiang, Qiang; Zhao, Xue; Yang, Jiaqiang; Liu, Baohong; Wei, Dongkai; Li, Hong; Yang, Jianfa; Yan, Yulin; Zhao, Guiying; Dong, Xinxing; Li, Mingli; Deng, Weidong; Leng, Jing; Wei, Chaochun; Wang, Chuan; Mao, Huaming; Zhang, Hao; Ding, Guohui; Li, Yixue

    2014-01-01

    The hypoxic environment imposes severe selective pressure on species living at high altitude. To understand the genetic bases of adaptation to high altitude in dogs, we performed whole-genome sequencing of 60 dogs including five breeds living at continuous altitudes along the Tibetan Plateau from 800 to 5100 m as well as one European breed. More than 150× sequencing coverage for each breed provides us with a comprehensive assessment of the genetic polymorphisms of the dogs, including Tibetan Mastiffs. Comparison of the breeds from different altitudes reveals strong signals of population differentiation at the locus of hypoxia-related genes including endothelial Per-Arnt-Sim (PAS) domain protein 1 (EPAS1) and beta hemoglobin cluster. Notably, four novel nonsynonymous mutations specific to high-altitude dogs are identified at EPAS1, one of which occurred at a quite conserved site in the PAS domain. The association testing between EPAS1 genotypes and blood-related phenotypes on additional high-altitude dogs reveals that the homozygous mutation is associated with decreased blood flow resistance, which may help to improve hemorheologic fitness. Interestingly, EPAS1 was also identified as a selective target in Tibetan highlanders, though no amino acid changes were found. Thus, our results not only indicate parallel evolution of humans and dogs in adaptation to high-altitude hypoxia, but also provide a new opportunity to study the role of EPAS1 in the adaptive processes. PMID:24721644

  11. When the sun never sets: diverse activity rhythms under continuous daylight in free-living arctic-breeding birds

    PubMed Central

    Steiger, Silke S.; Valcu, Mihai; Spoelstra, Kamiel; Helm, Barbara; Wikelski, Martin; Kempenaers, Bart

    2013-01-01

    Circadian clocks are centrally involved in the regulation of daily behavioural and physiological processes. These clocks are synchronized to the 24 h day by external cues (Zeitgeber), the most important of which is the light–dark cycle. In polar environments, however, the strength of the Zeitgeber is greatly reduced around the summer and winter solstices (continuous daylight or continuous darkness). How animals time their behaviour under such conditions has rarely been studied in the wild. Using a radio-telemetry-based system, we investigated daily activity rhythms under continuous daylight in Barrow, Alaska, throughout the breeding season in four bird species that differ in mating system and parental behaviour. We found substantial diversity in daily activity rhythms depending on species, sex and breeding stage. Individuals exhibited either robust, entrained 24 h activity cycles, were continuously active (arrhythmic) or showed ‘free-running’ activity cycles. In semipalmated sandpipers, a shorebird with biparental incubation, we show that the free-running rhythm is synchronized between pair mates. The diversity of diel time-keeping under continuous daylight emphasizes the plasticity of the circadian system, and the importance of the social and life-history context. Our results support the idea that circadian behaviour can be adaptively modified to enable species-specific time-keeping under polar conditions. PMID:23782884

  12. When the sun never sets: diverse activity rhythms under continuous daylight in free-living arctic-breeding birds.

    PubMed

    Steiger, Silke S; Valcu, Mihai; Spoelstra, Kamiel; Helm, Barbara; Wikelski, Martin; Kempenaers, Bart

    2013-08-07

    Circadian clocks are centrally involved in the regulation of daily behavioural and physiological processes. These clocks are synchronized to the 24 h day by external cues (Zeitgeber), the most important of which is the light-dark cycle. In polar environments, however, the strength of the Zeitgeber is greatly reduced around the summer and winter solstices (continuous daylight or continuous darkness). How animals time their behaviour under such conditions has rarely been studied in the wild. Using a radio-telemetry-based system, we investigated daily activity rhythms under continuous daylight in Barrow, Alaska, throughout the breeding season in four bird species that differ in mating system and parental behaviour. We found substantial diversity in daily activity rhythms depending on species, sex and breeding stage. Individuals exhibited either robust, entrained 24 h activity cycles, were continuously active (arrhythmic) or showed 'free-running' activity cycles. In semipalmated sandpipers, a shorebird with biparental incubation, we show that the free-running rhythm is synchronized between pair mates. The diversity of diel time-keeping under continuous daylight emphasizes the plasticity of the circadian system, and the importance of the social and life-history context. Our results support the idea that circadian behaviour can be adaptively modified to enable species-specific time-keeping under polar conditions.

  13. Transformation of fruit trees. Useful breeding tool or continued future prospect?

    PubMed

    Petri, César; Burgos, Lorenzo

    2005-02-01

    Regeneration and transformation systems using mature plant material of woody fruit species have to be achieved as a necessary requirement for the introduction of useful genes into specific cultivars and the rapid evaluation of resulting horticultural traits. Although the commercial production of transgenic annual crops is a reality, commercial genetically-engineered fruit trees are still far from common. In most woody fruit species, transformation and regeneration of commercial cultivars are not routine, generally being limited to a few genotypes or to seedlings. The future of genetic transformation as a tool for the breeding of fruit trees requires the development of genotype-independent procedures, based on the transformation of meristematic cells with high regeneration potential and/or the use of regeneration-promoting genes. The public concern with the introduction of antibiotic resistance into food and the restrictions due to new European laws that do not allow deliberate release of plants transformed with antibiotic-resistance genes highlight the development of methods that avoid the use of antibiotic-dependent selection or allow elimination of marker genesfrom the transformed plant as a research priority in coming years.

  14. Assessment of ethylene glycol monobutyl and monophenyl ether reproductive toxicity using a continuous breeding protocol in Swiss CD-1 mice.

    PubMed

    Heindel, J J; Gulati, D K; Russell, V S; Reel, J R; Lawton, A D; Lamb, J C

    1990-11-01

    A continuous breeding reproduction study design was utilized to examine the reproductive toxicity of ethylene glycol monobutyl ether (EGBE) and ethylene glycol monophenyl ether (EGPE). Swiss CD-1 mice were administered EGBE in drinking water (0, 0.5, 1.0, and 2.0%, i.e., 0.7, 1.3, and 2.1 g/kg body wt/day) and EGPE was administered via the feed (0, 0.25, 1.25, and 2.5%, i.e., 0, 0.4, 2.0, and 4 g/kg body wt/day). Both male and female mice were dosed for 7 days prior to and during a 98-day cohabitation period. EGBE was toxic at the high (2%) and mid dose (1%) to adult F0 female mice: 13 out of 22 females at the high dose and 6 out of 20 at the mid dose died during the cohabitation period. Both the high- and mid-dose animals produced fewer litters/pair, fewer pups/litter, with decreased pup weight. These effects occurred in the presence of decreased body weight, decreased water consumption, and increased kidney weight. A crossover mating trial indicated that the reproductive effects could be attributed primarily to an effect on the female. This was substantiated at necropsy where testes and epididymis weights were normal as were sperm number and motility. Fertility of the offspring of the 0.5% group was normal in the presence of increased liver weights. With respect to EGPE, there was no change in the ability to produce five litters during the continuous breeding period. There was, however, a significant but small (10-15%) decrease in the number of pups/litter and in pup weight in the high-dose group. A crossover mating trial suggested a female component of the reproductive toxicity of EGPE. While fertility was only minimally compromised, severe neonatal toxicity was observed. By Day 21 there were only 8 out of 40 litters in the mid- and high-dose groups which had at least one male and female/litter. Second generation reproductive performance of the mid-dose group (1.25%) was unaffected except for a small decrease in live pup weight. In summary the reproductive

  15. Toward an Evolved Concept of Landrace.

    PubMed

    Casañas, Francesc; Simó, Joan; Casals, Joan; Prohens, Jaime

    2017-01-01

    The term "landrace" has generally been defined as a cultivated, genetically heterogeneous variety that has evolved in a certain ecogeographical area and is therefore adapted to the edaphic and climatic conditions and to its traditional management and uses. Despite being considered by many to be inalterable, landraces have been and are in a constant state of evolution as a result of natural and artificial selection. Many landraces have disappeared from cultivation but are preserved in gene banks. Using modern selection and breeding technology tools to shape these preserved landraces together with the ones that are still cultivated is a further step in their evolution in order to preserve their agricultural significance. Adapting historical landraces to present agricultural conditions using cutting-edge breeding technology represents a challenging opportunity to use them in a modern sustainable agriculture, as an immediate return on the investment is highly unlikely. Consequently, we propose a more inclusive definition of landraces, namely that they consist of cultivated varieties that have evolved and may continue evolving, using conventional or modern breeding techniques, in traditional or new agricultural environments within a defined ecogeographical area and under the influence of the local human culture. This includes adaptation of landraces to new management systems and the unconscious or conscious selection made by farmers or breeders using available technology. In this respect, a mixed selection system might be established in which farmers and other social agents develop evolved landraces from the variability generated by public entities.

  16. Toward an Evolved Concept of Landrace

    PubMed Central

    Casañas, Francesc; Simó, Joan; Casals, Joan; Prohens, Jaime

    2017-01-01

    The term “landrace” has generally been defined as a cultivated, genetically heterogeneous variety that has evolved in a certain ecogeographical area and is therefore adapted to the edaphic and climatic conditions and to its traditional management and uses. Despite being considered by many to be inalterable, landraces have been and are in a constant state of evolution as a result of natural and artificial selection. Many landraces have disappeared from cultivation but are preserved in gene banks. Using modern selection and breeding technology tools to shape these preserved landraces together with the ones that are still cultivated is a further step in their evolution in order to preserve their agricultural significance. Adapting historical landraces to present agricultural conditions using cutting-edge breeding technology represents a challenging opportunity to use them in a modern sustainable agriculture, as an immediate return on the investment is highly unlikely. Consequently, we propose a more inclusive definition of landraces, namely that they consist of cultivated varieties that have evolved and may continue evolving, using conventional or modern breeding techniques, in traditional or new agricultural environments within a defined ecogeographical area and under the influence of the local human culture. This includes adaptation of landraces to new management systems and the unconscious or conscious selection made by farmers or breeders using available technology. In this respect, a mixed selection system might be established in which farmers and other social agents develop evolved landraces from the variability generated by public entities. PMID:28228769

  17. The influence of eastern North American autumnal migrant monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus L.) on continuously breeding resident monarch populations in southern Florida.

    PubMed

    Knight, Amy; Brower, Lincoln P

    2009-07-01

    In Florida, the eastern North American population of the monarch butterfly exhibits geographic variability in population structure and dynamics. This includes the occurrence of migrants throughout the peninsula during the autumnal migration, occasional overwintering clusters that form along the Gulf Coast, remigrants from Mexico that breed in north-central Florida during the spring, and what have been assumed to be year-round, resident breeding populations in southern Florida. The work reported here focused on two monarch populations west of Miami and addressed four questions: Are there permanent resident populations of monarchs in southern Florida? Do these breed continuously throughout the year? Do they receive northern monarchs moving south during the autumn migration? Do they receive overwintered monarchs returning via Cuba or the Yucatan during the spring remigration from the Mexican overwintering area? Monthly collections and counts of spermatophores in the bursa copulatrices of females established that a resident population of continuously breeding monarchs exists year-round in southern Florida. It was determined through cardenolide fingerprinting that most of the butterflies had bred on the local southern Florida milkweed species, Asclepias curassavica. During the autumn migration period, however, some monarchs had fed on the northern milkweed, Asclepias syriaca. It appears that instead of migrating to Mexico, these individuals travel south through peninsular Florida, break diapause, mate with and become incorporated into the resident breeding populations. None of the monarchs captured in spring had the A. syriaca cardenolide fingerprint, which is evidence against the southern Florida populations receiving overwintered remigrants from Cuba, Central America or Mexico.

  18. Breeding lettuce for improved fresh-cut processing

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Lettuce is a widely grown vegetable that is used to make fresh-cut salads, which are popular with consumers due to their convenience. Production and processing of fresh-cut lettuce is continually evolving, offering more products and becoming more efficient. Breeding new lettuce cultivars specialized...

  19. Cardiac imaging of congenital heart diseases during interventional procedures continues to evolve: Pros and cons of the main techniques.

    PubMed

    Hascoët, Sebastien; Warin-Fresse, Karine; Baruteau, Alban-Elouen; Hadeed, Khaled; Karsenty, Clement; Petit, Jérôme; Guérin, Patrice; Fraisse, Alain; Acar, Philippe

    2016-02-01

    Cardiac catheterization has contributed to the progress made in the management of patients with congenital heart disease (CHD). First, it allowed clarification of the diagnostic assessment of CHD, by offering a better understanding of normal cardiac physiology and the pathophysiology and anatomy of complex malformations. Then, it became an alternative to surgery and a major component of the therapeutic approach for some CHD lesions. Nowadays, techniques have evolved and cardiac catheterization is widely used to percutaneously close intracardiac shunts, to relieve obstructive valvar or vessel lesions, and for transcatheter valve replacement. Accurate imaging is mandatory to guide these procedures. Cardiac imaging during catheterization of CHD must provide accurate images of lesions, surrounding cardiac structures, medical devices and tools used to deliver them. Cardiac imaging has to be 'real-time' with an excellent temporal resolution to ensure 'eyes-hands' synchronization and 'device-target area' accurate positioning. In this comprehensive review, we provide an overview of conventional cardiac imaging tools used in the catheterization laboratory in daily practice, as well as the effect of recent evolution and future imaging modalities.

  20. Micromechanical analysis of a continuous fiber metal matrix composite including the effects of matrix viscoplasticity and evolving damage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, D. H.; Jones, R. H.; Boyd, J. G.

    1994-03-01

    A THERMOMECHANICAL ANALYSIS of a metal matrix continuous fiber composite is performed herein. The analysis includes the effects of matrix inelasticity and interface cracking. Due to these nonlinearities, the analysis is performed computationally using the finite element method. Matrix inelasticity is modeled with a rate dependent viscoplasticity model. Interface fracture is modeled by the use of a nonlinear interface constitutive model. The problem formulation is summarized, and results are given for a typical SiC-Ti composite at elevated temperature. Preliminary results indicate that rate dependent viscoplasticity can be a significant mechanism for dissipating the energy available for interface fracture, thus contributing to improved macroscopic ductility of the composite.

  1. Apricot Breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Apricot orchard area and fruit production are increasing worldwide. Breeding programs engage in apricot development to provide new varieties to meet needs of producers and consumers. Over the last 20 years, breeders have used new techniques to assist in variety development and to increase breeding...

  2. Molecular breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Use of molecular and genomic tools to assist selection of parents or progeny has become an integral part of modern cotton breeding. In this chapter, the basic components of molecular cotton breeding are described. These components include: molecular marker development, genetic and physical map const...

  3. 1980 breeding bird censuses

    SciTech Connect

    Raynor, G.S.

    1980-09-01

    As part of a program to characterize the plant and animal life of the Laboratory site and the surrounding region, the two breeding bird censuses originated in 1977 were continued in 1980. Coverage was below that of previous years due to illness and travel of some participants, but 11 trips were made to the BNL plot and 8 to the Westhampton plot. Each was censused by separate teams of three volunteer observers. The number of breeding species and number of territorial males on the BNL plot have progressively declined since 1977 but little change has taken place in either number of territories or species composition on the Westhampton plot.

  4. Simulated Breeding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Unemi, Tatsuo

    This chapter describes a basic framework of simulated breeding, a type of interactive evolutionary computing to breed artifacts, whose origin is Blind Watchmaker by Dawkins. These methods make it easy for humans to design a complex object adapted to his/her subjective criteria, just similarly to agricultural products we have been developing over thousands of years. Starting from randomly initialized genome, the solution candidates are improved through several generations with artificial selection. The graphical user interface helps the process of breeding with techniques of multifield user interface and partial breeding. The former improves the diversity of individuals that prevents being trapped at local optimum. The latter makes it possible for the user to fix features he/she already satisfied. These methods were examined through artistic applications by the author: SBART for graphics art and SBEAT for music. Combining with a direct genome editor and exportation to another graphical or musical tool on the computer, they can be powerful tools for artistic creation. These systems may contribute to the creation of a type of new culture.

  5. H9N2 influenza viruses isolated from poultry in Korean live bird markets continuously evolve and cause the severe clinical signs in layers.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jin A; Cho, Sung Hwan; Kim, Hyun Soo; Seo, Sang Heui

    2006-12-20

    H9N2 influenza viruses are endemic in many Asian countries. We demonstrated that H9N2 influenza viruses isolated from poultry in Korean live bird markets are genetically changing and could cause the clinical signs in layers. Genetic analysis showed that Korean avian H9N2 influenza viruses are distinct from H9N2 influenza viruses circulating in poultry in China and Hong Kong. When we infected layers with H9N2 isolates, layers showed about 30% mortality and the reduction of egg productions. Considering that H9N2 influenza virus is one of potential pandemic candidates, the continuous surveillance is needed to monitor avian H9N2 influenza viruses for the poultry industry and humans.

  6. Natural heterogeneity and evolving geochemistry of Lower Tuscaloosa Formation brine in response to continuing CO2 injection at Cranfield EOR site, Mississippi, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thordsen, J. J.; Kharaka, Y. K.; Thomas, B.; Abedini, A. A.; Conaway, C. H.; Manning, M. A.; Lu, J.

    2012-12-01

    Geochemical monitoring of Lower Tuscaloosa Formation (LTF) brine continues at the Cranfield CO2-enhanced oil recovery (EOR) and sequestration site to investigate the potential for the geologic storage of large volumes of CO2 in saline aquifers and depleted reservoirs. Cranfield oil field is a domal depleted oil and gas reservoir in the Mississippi Interior Salt Basin, with production in heterogeneous fluvial sandstones of the LTF (depth ~3000 m). CO2 flood began in July 2008. Brine samples were collected from selected production wells in March and December 2009, April 2010, and November 2011. Intensive sampling also was conducted for the first 18 days of a CO2 injection experiment below the oil-water contact (December 2009) at the Detailed Area of Study (DAS) 3-well array. The sampling objectives are to define the geochemical composition of the pre-injection brine, and to understand the geochemical changes resulting from interactions between the injected CO2, brine, and reservoir minerals. Results show that Tuscaloosa brine is Na-Ca-Cl type with total salinity ranging from ~140 to 160 g/L TDS (50 samples). Relatively large variations are observed in major divalent cations (Ca ~7,500-14,000 mg/L, Mg ~800-1,250 mg/L, Sr ~475-750 mg/L). Significant positive correlations are noted amongst Ca, Mg, Sr, Ba, and Br, whereas these solutes all trend negatively with Na and Cl. These results may be interpreted as possible binary mixing between two end-member waters: (1) high Na-Cl (51 and 97 g/L, respectively), low Ca, Mg, Sr, and Br (~7500, 800, 475, 280 mg/L, respectively); and (2) low Na-Cl (40 and 86 g/L), high Ca, Mg, Sr, and Br (~14,000, 1250, 750, 480 mg/L). This apparent binary mixing has no obvious correlation to CO2 injection, which suggests that observed variations are due to natural heterogeneities in LTF brine within the Cranfield dome. The variations may indicate vertical and/or lateral proximity to a halite source (i.e. salt dome), with the high Na-Cl, low Br

  7. Evolvable Neural Software System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Curtis, Steven A.

    2009-01-01

    The Evolvable Neural Software System (ENSS) is composed of sets of Neural Basis Functions (NBFs), which can be totally autonomously created and removed according to the changing needs and requirements of the software system. The resulting structure is both hierarchical and self-similar in that a given set of NBFs may have a ruler NBF, which in turn communicates with other sets of NBFs. These sets of NBFs may function as nodes to a ruler node, which are also NBF constructs. In this manner, the synthetic neural system can exhibit the complexity, three-dimensional connectivity, and adaptability of biological neural systems. An added advantage of ENSS over a natural neural system is its ability to modify its core genetic code in response to environmental changes as reflected in needs and requirements. The neural system is fully adaptive and evolvable and is trainable before release. It continues to rewire itself while on the job. The NBF is a unique, bilevel intelligence neural system composed of a higher-level heuristic neural system (HNS) and a lower-level, autonomic neural system (ANS). Taken together, the HNS and the ANS give each NBF the complete capabilities of a biological neural system to match sensory inputs to actions. Another feature of the NBF is the Evolvable Neural Interface (ENI), which links the HNS and ANS. The ENI solves the interface problem between these two systems by actively adapting and evolving from a primitive initial state (a Neural Thread) to a complicated, operational ENI and successfully adapting to a training sequence of sensory input. This simulates the adaptation of a biological neural system in a developmental phase. Within the greater multi-NBF and multi-node ENSS, self-similar ENI s provide the basis for inter-NBF and inter-node connectivity.

  8. eta Carinae Continues to Evolve (Abstract)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, J. C.

    2015-06-01

    (Abstract only) Eta Carinae affords us a unique opportunity to study the pre-supernova evolution of the most massive stars. For at least the last half century, it has maintained a 5.5-year spectroscopic cycle that culminates with abrupt decreases in the strong stellar wind emission features. Over the last 15 years, the star has brightened at an accelerated rate and altered its spectrum, in addition to the spectroscopic cycle, indicating an ongoing change in state. We present Hubble Space Telescope spectroscopy and synthetic photometry from the most recent spectroscopic event (2014.5) that shows notable differences with past events and provides clues to the on-going evolution of the star.

  9. Effect of continuous female exposure on behavioral repertoire and stereotypical behaviors in restrained male dromedary camels during the onset of the breeding season.

    PubMed

    Fatnassi, Meriem; Padalino, Barbara; Monaco, David; Khorchani, Touhami; Lacalandra, Giovanni Michele; Hammadi, Mohamed

    2016-06-01

    This study aimed to test the effects of the three management systems on the behavioral repertoire and particularly on the incidence of stereotypical behavior in restrained camels. Five male camels were tested under the following management systems: (i) unexposed, housing in a single box (Unexpo); (ii) continuous exposure, exposed continuously to females (ConExpoF); and (iii) re-unexposed, housing again in a single box (Re-Unexpo). Every day, bulls were filmed for 30 min and videos were analyzed using a focal animal sampling ethogram. Under the ConExpoF system, camels spent the majority of time in standing with opened legs (490.0 ± 94.3 s), looking (925.0 ± 93.7 s), and walking toward the females (206.0 ± 73.4 s) and they ate and ruminated less compared to Unexpo and Re-Unexpo systems. Rumination and standing durations were significantly longer in Re-Unexpo than in Unexpo and ConExpoF management systems. When camels were continuously exposed to females, they showed few stereotypical behaviors compared to Unexpo (490.0 ± 146.1 s) and Re-Unexpo (624.0 ± 146.1 s) systems. The frequency of both total and oral stereotypes was significantly higher in Unexpo and Re-Unexpo systems compared to ConExpoF; however, no significant difference was observed among the three management systems in the frequency of locomotor stereotypes. Overall, it appears that the continuous female exposure system might be a suitable management practice for male camels used for intensive reproduction, as it decreases the manifestation of stereotypical behavior in comparison with housing for 24 h in a single box.

  10. Best of Breed

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lohn, Jason

    2004-01-01

    No team of engineers, no matter how much time they took or how many bottles of cabernet they consumed, would dream up an antenna that looked like a deer antler on steroids. Yet that's what a group at NASA Ames Research Center came up with-thanks to a little help from Darwin. NASA's Space Technology 5 nanosatellites, which are scheduled to start measuring Earth's magnetosphere in late 2004, requires an antenna that can receive a wide range of frequencies regardless of the spacecraft's orientation. Rather than leave such exacting requirements in the hands of a human, the engineers decided to breed a design using genetic algorithms and 32 Linux PCs. The computers generated small antenna-constructing programs (the genotypes) and executed them to produce designs (the phenotypes). Then the designs were evaluated using an antenna simulator. The team settled on the form pictured here. You won't find this kind of antenna in any textbook, design guide, or research paper. But its innovative structure meets a challenging set of specifications. If successfully deployed, it will be the first evolved antenna to make it out of the lab and the first piece of evolved hardware ever to fly in space.

  11. Evolvable synthetic neural system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Curtis, Steven A. (Inventor)

    2009-01-01

    An evolvable synthetic neural system includes an evolvable neural interface operably coupled to at least one neural basis function. Each neural basis function includes an evolvable neural interface operably coupled to a heuristic neural system to perform high-level functions and an autonomic neural system to perform low-level functions. In some embodiments, the evolvable synthetic neural system is operably coupled to one or more evolvable synthetic neural systems in a hierarchy.

  12. Temporal flexibility of reproduction in temperate-breeding dabbling ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Krapu, Gary L.

    2000-01-01

    I compared nesting intervals during three consecutive years in five species of temperate-nesting dabbling ducks (Mallard [Anas platyrhynchos], Northern Pintail [Anas acuta], Northern Shoveler [Anas clypeata], Blue-winged Teal [Anas discors], Gadwall [Anas strepera]) and assessed whether differences existed in timing of refractoriness. Most nesting by females of all five species ended by the summer solstice. Nesting ended earliest for Northern Shovelers and Northern Pintails and latest for Gadwalls. Some Mallards, Blue-winged Teal, and Gadwalls continued to nest into mid- and late summer, whereas Northern Shovelers and Northern pintails did not. Mallards, Blue-winged Teal, and Gadwalls accounted for 99% (81 of 82) of flightless broods resulting from nests initiated during mid- or late summer in North Dakota and 98% (58 of 59) of flightless juveniles shot on or after 1 October by a random sample of duck hunters from across the United States. Early cessation of breeding by Northern Shovelers may have evolved in response to the species' limited flexibility in diet. Photorefractory mechanisms that limit most breeding to spring presumably evolved in response to severe constraints on reproductive success when nesting continued through summer(e.g. mortality of late-hatched young and molting females due to low temperatures). Interspecific differences in photosensitivity may account for variation in timing of cessation of nesting in late spring, but controlled experiments are needed to assess the possible role of non-photic influences. My results suggest that the refractory mechanisms controlling length of the breeding in temperate-nesting dabbling ducks are more varied and complex than previously thought, with non-photic influences (e.g. water conditions, food availability, food quality) having a larger role than indicated by earlier research.

  13. USDA lettuce breeding and genetics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The lettuce industry of California requires continued development of improved, adapted cultivars to meet new disease and insect problems, changes in the market, and changes in growing procedures. The USDA lettuce breeding and genetics project aims to incorporate valuable traits into crisphead, mixed...

  14. Diet of canvasbacks during breeding

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Austin, J.E.; Serie, J.R.; Noyes, J.H.

    1990-01-01

    We examined diets of canvasbacks (Aythya valisineria) breeding in southwestern Manitoba during 1977-81. Percent volume of animal foods consumed did not differ between males and females nor among prenesting, rapid follicle growth, laying, incubation, and renesting periods in females (mean = 50.1%). Tubers and shoots of fennelleaf pondweed (Potamogeton pectinatus) and midge larvae (Chironomidae) were the predominant foods, comprising on average 45% and 23% of the diet volume, respectively. Continued importance of plant foods to canvasbacks throughout reproduction contrasts with the mostly invertebrate diets of other prairie-breeding ducks, and does not fit current theories of nutritional ecology of breeding anatids (i.e., females meet the protein requirements of reproduction by consuming a high proportion of animal foods).

  15. Analyzing Evolving Social Network 2 (EVOLVE2)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-04-01

    over time, and how changes in topology affect evolution of influence and groups -Understand the impact of dynamics and network flows on the...incorporate time. The research had two major threads: • Understand how networks evolve over time, and how changes in topology affect evolution of...1958 14 Meissner Effect 1958 307 Random-Phase Approximation ... Superconductivity 1959 40 Evidence for Anisotropy of the Superconducting Energy... 1989

  16. Genomic medicine: evolving science, evolving ethics

    PubMed Central

    Soden, Sarah E; Farrow, Emily G; Saunders, Carol J; Lantos, John D

    2012-01-01

    Genomic medicine is rapidly evolving. Next-generation sequencing is changing the diagnostic paradigm by allowing genetic testing to be carried out more quickly, less expensively and with much higher resolution; pushing the envelope on existing moral norms and legal regulations. Early experience with implementation of next-generation sequencing to diagnose rare genetic conditions in symptomatic children suggests ways that genomic medicine might come to be used and some of the ethical issues that arise, impacting test design, patient selection, consent, sequencing analysis and communication of results. The ethical issues that arise from use of new technologies cannot be satisfactorily analyzed until they are understood and they cannot be understood until the technologies are deployed in the real world. PMID:23173007

  17. Advances in Japanese pear breeding in Japan.

    PubMed

    Saito, Toshihiro

    2016-01-01

    The Japanese pear (Pyrus pyrifolia Nakai) is one of the most widely grown fruit trees in Japan, and it has been used throughout Japan's history. The commercial production of pears increased rapidly with the successive discoveries of the chance seedling cultivars 'Chojuro' and 'Nijisseiki' around 1890, and the development of new cultivars has continued since 1915. The late-maturing, leading cultivars 'Niitaka' and 'Shinko' were released during the initial breeding stage. Furthermore, systematic breeding by the Horticultural Research Station (currently, NARO Institute of Fruit Tree Science, National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NIFTS)) began in 1935, which mainly aimed to improve fruit quality by focusing on flesh texture and black spot disease resistance. To date, 22 cultivars have been released, including 'Kosui', 'Hosui', and 'Akizuki', which are current leading cultivars from the breeding program. Four induced mutant cultivars induced by gamma irradiation, which exhibit some resistance to black spot disease, were released from the Institute of Radiation Breeding. Among these cultivars, 'Gold Nijisseiki' has become a leading cultivar. Moreover, 'Nansui' from the Nagano prefectural institute breeding program was released, and it has also become a leading cultivar. Current breeding objectives at NIFTS mainly combine superior fruit quality with traits related to labor and cost reduction, multiple disease resistance, or self-compatibility. Regarding future breeding, marker-assisted selection for each trait, QTL analyses, genome-wide association studies, and genomic selection analyses are currently in progress.

  18. Tritium breeding in fusion reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Abdou, M.A.

    1982-10-01

    Key technological problems that influence tritium breeding in fusion blankets are reviewed. The breeding potential of candidate materials is evaluated and compared to the tritium breeding requirements. The sensitivity of tritium breeding to design and nuclear data parameters is reviewed. A framework for an integrated approach to improve tritium breeding prediction is discussed with emphasis on nuclear data requirements.

  19. Breeding and genetic diversity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Corn breeding has been historically remarkably successful. Much research has investigated optimal breeding procedures, which are detailed here. A smaller effort has been put into identifying useful genetic resources for maize and how to best use them, but results from long-term base broadening effor...

  20. Tritium breeding materials

    SciTech Connect

    Hollenberg, G.W.; Johnson, C.E.; Abdou, M.

    1984-03-01

    Tritium breeding materials are essential to the operation of D-T fusion facilities. Both of the present options - solid ceramic breeding materials and liquid metal materials are reviewed with emphasis not only on their attractive features but also on critical materials issues which must be resolved.

  1. Sexual Reproduction and Breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In the second edition of Plant Propagation Concepts and Laboratory Exercises, we have combined the first edition chapters 36: Sexual Reproduction in Angiosperms and 37: Breeding Horticultural Plants into the present single chapter Sexual Reproduction and Breeding. These topics are so closely relate...

  2. Can non-breeding be a cost of breeding dispersal?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Danchin, E.; Cam, E.

    2002-01-01

    Breeding habitat selection and dispersal are crucial processes that affect many components of fitness. Breeding dispersal entails costs, one of which has been neglected: dispersing animals may miss breeding opportunities because breeding dispersal requires finding a new nesting site and mate, two time- and energy-consuming activities. Dispersers are expected to be prone to non-breeding. We used the kittiwake (Rissa tridactyla) to test whether breeding dispersal influences breeding probability. Breeding probability was associated with dispersal, in that both were negatively influenced by private information (previous individual reproductive success) and public information (average reproductive success of conspecifics) about patch quality. Furthermore, the probability of skipping breeding was 1.7 times higher in birds that settled in a new patch relative to those that remained on the same patch. Finally, non-breeders that resumed breeding were 4.4 times more likely to disperse than birds that bred in successive years. Although private information may influence breeding probability directly, the link between breeding probability and public information may be indirect, through the influence of public information on breeding dispersal, non-breeding thus being a cost of dispersal. These results support the hypothesis that dispersal may result in not being able to breed. More generally, non-breeding (which can be interpreted as an extreme form of breeding failure) may reveal costs of various previous activities. Because monitoring the non-breeding portion of a population is difficult, non-breeders have been neglected in many studies of reproduction trade-offs.

  3. Methods Evolved by Observation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Montessori, Maria

    2016-01-01

    Montessori's idea of the child's nature and the teacher's perceptiveness begins with amazing simplicity, and when she speaks of "methods evolved," she is unveiling a methodological system for observation. She begins with the early childhood explosion into writing, which is a familiar child phenomenon that Montessori has written about…

  4. Small range and distinct distribution in a satellite breeding colony of the critically endangered Waved Albatross

    EPA Science Inventory

    To determine the proximate consequences of the limited breeding distribution of the critically endangered Waved Albatross (Phoebastria irrorata), we present continuous breeding season GPS tracks highlighting differences in behaviour, destinations, and distances travelled between ...

  5. Welfare in horse breeding

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, M. L. H.; Sandøe, P.

    2015-01-01

    Welfare problems related to the way horses are bred, whether by coitus or by the application of artificial reproduction techniques (ARTs), have been given no discrete consideration within the academic literature. This paper reviews the existing knowledge base about welfare issues in horse breeding and identifies areas in which data is lacking. We suggest that all methods of horse breeding are associated with potential welfare problems, but also that the judicious use of ARTs can sometimes help to address those problems. We discuss how negative welfare effects could be identified and limited and how positive welfare effects associated with breeding might be maximised. Further studies are needed to establish an evidence base about how stressful or painful various breeding procedures are for the animals involved, and what the lifetime welfare implications of ARTs are for future animal generations. PMID:25908746

  6. Self Evolving Modular Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tokunaga, Kazuhiro; Kawabata, Nobuyuki; Furukawa, Tetsuo

    We propose a novel modular network called the Self-Evolving Modular Network (SEEM). The SEEM has a modular network architecture with a graph structure and these following advantages: (1) new modules are added incrementally to allow the network to adapt in a self-organizing manner, and (2) graph's paths are formed based on the relationships between the models represented by modules. The SEEM is expected to be applicable to evolving functions of an autonomous robot in a self-organizing manner through interaction with the robot's environment and categorizing large-scale information. This paper presents the architecture and an algorithm for the SEEM. Moreover, performance characteristic and effectiveness of the network are shown by simulations using cubic functions and a set of 3D-objects.

  7. Effect of sex, age, and breed on genetic recombination features in cattle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Meiotic recombination is a fundamental biological process which generates genetic diversity, affects fertility, and influences evolvability. Here we investigate the roles of sex, age, and breed in cattle recombination features, including recombination rate, location and crossover interference. Usin...

  8. Guayule: Culture, breeding and rubber production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Pressure on worldwide Hevea rubber supplies and other factors are renewing interest in guayule rubber. The objective of this chapter is to review recent and past research dealing with guayule production, breeding, and product development. Production research continues to show that although guayule i...

  9. Challenges and opportunities in genetic improvement of local livestock breeds

    PubMed Central

    Biscarini, Filippo; Nicolazzi, Ezequiel L.; Stella, Alessandra; Boettcher, Paul J.; Gandini, Gustavo

    2015-01-01

    Sufficient genetic variation in livestock populations is necessary both for adaptation to future changes in climate and consumer demand, and for continual genetic improvement of economically important traits. Unfortunately, the current trend is for reduced genetic variation, both within and across breeds. The latter occurs primarily through the loss of small, local breeds. Inferior production is a key driver for loss of small breeds, as they are replaced by high-output international transboundary breeds. Selection to improve productivity of small local breeds is therefore critical for their long term survival. The objective of this paper is to review the technology options available for the genetic improvement of small local breeds and discuss their feasibility. Most technologies have been developed for the high-input breeds and consequently are more favorably applied in that context. Nevertheless, their application in local breeds is not precluded and can yield significant benefits, especially when multiple technologies are applied in close collaboration with farmers and breeders. Breeding strategies that require cooperation and centralized decision-making, such as optimal contribution selection, may in fact be more easily implemented in small breeds. PMID:25763010

  10. Breeding implications resulting from classification of patellae luxation in dogs.

    PubMed

    van Grevenhof, E M; Hazewinkel, H A W; Heuven, H C M

    2016-08-01

    Patellar luxation (PL) is one of the major hereditary orthopaedic abnormalities observed in a variety of dog breeds. When the patellae move sideways out of the trochlear groove, this is called PL. The PL score varies between dogs from normal to very severe. Reducing the prevalence of PL by breeding could prevent surgery, thereby improve welfare. Orthopaedic specialists differentiate between normal and loose patellae, where the patellae can be moved to the edge of the trochlear groove, considering scoring loose patellae as normal in the future. Loose patellae are considered acceptable for breeding so far by the breeding organization. The aim of this study was to analyse the genetic background of PL to decide on the importance of loose patellae when breeding for healthy dogs. Data are available from two dog breeds, that is Flat-coated Retrievers (n = 3808) and Kooiker dogs (n = 794), with a total of 4602 dogs. Results show that loose patellae indicate that dogs are genetically more susceptible to develop PL because family members of the dogs with loose patellae showed more severe PL. In addition, the estimated breeding values for dogs with loose patellae indicate that breeding values of dogs with loose patellae were worse than breeding values obtained for dogs with a normal score. Given these results, it is advised to orthopaedic specialists to continue to score loose patellae as a separate class and to dog breeders to minimize the use of dogs in breeding with a genetically higher susceptibility for PL.

  11. Highly-evolved stars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Heap, S. R.

    1981-01-01

    The ways in which the IUE has proved useful in studying highly evolved stars are reviewed. The importance of high dispersion spectra for abundance analyses of the sd0 stars and for studies of the wind from the central star of NGC 6543 and the wind from the 0 type component of Vela X-1 is shown. Low dispersion spectra are used for absolute spectrophotometry of the dwarf nova, Ex Hya. Angular resolution is important for detecting and locating UV sources in globular clusters.

  12. Regolith Evolved Gas Analyzer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoffman, John H.; Hedgecock, Jud; Nienaber, Terry; Cooper, Bonnie; Allen, Carlton; Ming, Doug

    2000-01-01

    The Regolith Evolved Gas Analyzer (REGA) is a high-temperature furnace and mass spectrometer instrument for determining the mineralogical composition and reactivity of soil samples. REGA provides key mineralogical and reactivity data that is needed to understand the soil chemistry of an asteroid, which then aids in determining in-situ which materials should be selected for return to earth. REGA is capable of conducting a number of direct soil measurements that are unique to this instrument. These experimental measurements include: (1) Mass spectrum analysis of evolved gases from soil samples as they are heated from ambient temperature to 900 C; and (2) Identification of liberated chemicals, e.g., water, oxygen, sulfur, chlorine, and fluorine. REGA would be placed on the surface of a near earth asteroid. It is an autonomous instrument that is controlled from earth but does the analysis of regolith materials automatically. The REGA instrument consists of four primary components: (1) a flight-proven mass spectrometer, (2) a high-temperature furnace, (3) a soil handling system, and (4) a microcontroller. An external arm containing a scoop or drill gathers regolith samples. A sample is placed in the inlet orifice where the finest-grained particles are sifted into a metering volume and subsequently moved into a crucible. A movable arm then places the crucible in the furnace. The furnace is closed, thereby sealing the inner volume to collect the evolved gases for analysis. Owing to the very low g forces on an asteroid compared to Mars or the moon, the sample must be moved from inlet to crucible by mechanical means rather than by gravity. As the soil sample is heated through a programmed pattern, the gases evolved at each temperature are passed through a transfer tube to the mass spectrometer for analysis and identification. Return data from the instrument will lead to new insights and discoveries including: (1) Identification of the molecular masses of all of the gases

  13. Breeding-assisted genomics.

    PubMed

    Poland, Jesse

    2015-04-01

    The revolution of inexpensive sequencing has ushered in an unprecedented age of genomics. The promise of using this technology to accelerate plant breeding is being realized with a vision of genomics-assisted breeding that will lead to rapid genetic gain for expensive and difficult traits. The reality is now that robust phenotypic data is an increasing limiting resource to complement the current wealth of genomic information. While genomics has been hailed as the discipline to fundamentally change the scope of plant breeding, a more symbiotic relationship is likely to emerge. In the context of developing and evaluating large populations needed for functional genomics, none excel in this area more than plant breeders. While genetic studies have long relied on dedicated, well-structured populations, the resources dedicated to these populations in the context of readily available, inexpensive genotyping is making this philosophy less tractable relative to directly focusing functional genomics on material in breeding programs. Through shifting effort for basic genomic studies from dedicated structured populations, to capturing the entire scope of genetic determinants in breeding lines, we can move towards not only furthering our understanding of functional genomics in plants, but also rapidly improving crops for increased food security, availability and nutrition.

  14. Simulation of charge breeding of rubidium using Monte Carlo charge breeding code and generalized ECRIS model

    SciTech Connect

    Zhao, L.; Cluggish, B.; Kim, J. S.; Pardo, R.; Vondrasek, R.

    2010-02-15

    A Monte Carlo charge breeding code (MCBC) is being developed by FAR-TECH, Inc. to model the capture and charge breeding of 1+ ion beam in an electron cyclotron resonance ion source (ECRIS) device. The ECRIS plasma is simulated using the generalized ECRIS model which has two choices of boundary settings, free boundary condition and Bohm condition. The charge state distribution of the extracted beam ions is calculated by solving the steady state ion continuity equations where the profiles of the captured ions are used as source terms. MCBC simulations of the charge breeding of Rb+ showed good agreement with recent charge breeding experiments at Argonne National Laboratory (ANL). MCBC correctly predicted the peak of highly charged ion state outputs under free boundary condition and similar charge state distribution width but a lower peak charge state under the Bohm condition. The comparisons between the simulation results and ANL experimental measurements are presented and discussed.

  15. A Stefan problem on an evolving surface

    PubMed Central

    Alphonse, Amal; Elliott, Charles M.

    2015-01-01

    We formulate a Stefan problem on an evolving hypersurface and study the well posedness of weak solutions given L1 data. To do this, we first develop function spaces and results to handle equations on evolving surfaces in order to give a natural treatment of the problem. Then, we consider the existence of solutions for data; this is done by regularization of the nonlinearity. The regularized problem is solved by a fixed point theorem and then uniform estimates are obtained in order to pass to the limit. By using a duality method, we show continuous dependence, which allows us to extend the results to L1 data. PMID:26261364

  16. Advances in Japanese pear breeding in Japan

    PubMed Central

    Saito, Toshihiro

    2016-01-01

    The Japanese pear (Pyrus pyrifolia Nakai) is one of the most widely grown fruit trees in Japan, and it has been used throughout Japan’s history. The commercial production of pears increased rapidly with the successive discoveries of the chance seedling cultivars ‘Chojuro’ and ‘Nijisseiki’ around 1890, and the development of new cultivars has continued since 1915. The late-maturing, leading cultivars ‘Niitaka’ and ‘Shinko’ were released during the initial breeding stage. Furthermore, systematic breeding by the Horticultural Research Station (currently, NARO Institute of Fruit Tree Science, National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NIFTS)) began in 1935, which mainly aimed to improve fruit quality by focusing on flesh texture and black spot disease resistance. To date, 22 cultivars have been released, including ‘Kosui’, ‘Hosui’, and ‘Akizuki’, which are current leading cultivars from the breeding program. Four induced mutant cultivars induced by gamma irradiation, which exhibit some resistance to black spot disease, were released from the Institute of Radiation Breeding. Among these cultivars, ‘Gold Nijisseiki’ has become a leading cultivar. Moreover, ‘Nansui’ from the Nagano prefectural institute breeding program was released, and it has also become a leading cultivar. Current breeding objectives at NIFTS mainly combine superior fruit quality with traits related to labor and cost reduction, multiple disease resistance, or self-compatibility. Regarding future breeding, marker-assisted selection for each trait, QTL analyses, genome-wide association studies, and genomic selection analyses are currently in progress. PMID:27069390

  17. Review: Towards the agroecological management of ruminants, pigs and poultry through the development of sustainable breeding programmes. II. Breeding strategies.

    PubMed

    Phocas, F; Belloc, C; Bidanel, J; Delaby, L; Dourmad, J Y; Dumont, B; Ezanno, P; Fortun-Lamothe, L; Foucras, G; Frappat, B; González-García, E; Hazard, D; Larzul, C; Lubac, S; Mignon-Grasteau, S; Moreno, C R; Tixier-Boichard, M; Brochard, M

    2016-11-01

    Agroecology uses ecological processes and local resources rather than chemical inputs to develop productive and resilient livestock and crop production systems. In this context, breeding innovations are necessary to obtain animals that are both productive and adapted to a broad range of local contexts and diversity of systems. Breeding strategies to promote agroecological systems are similar for different animal species. However, current practices differ regarding the breeding of ruminants, pigs and poultry. Ruminant breeding is still an open system where farmers continue to choose their own breeds and strategies. Conversely, pig and poultry breeding is more or less the exclusive domain of international breeding companies which supply farmers with hybrid animals. Innovations in breeding strategies must therefore be adapted to the different species. In developed countries, reorienting current breeding programmes seems to be more effective than developing programmes dedicated to agroecological systems that will struggle to be really effective because of the small size of the populations currently concerned by such systems. Particular attention needs to be paid to determining the respective usefulness of cross-breeding v. straight breeding strategies of well-adapted local breeds. While cross-breeding may offer some immediate benefits in terms of improving certain traits that enable the animals to adapt well to local environmental conditions, it may be difficult to sustain these benefits in the longer term and could also induce an important loss of genetic diversity if the initial pure-bred populations are no longer produced. As well as supporting the value of within-breed diversity, we must preserve between-breed diversity in order to maintain numerous options for adaptation to a variety of production environments and contexts. This may involve specific public policies to maintain and characterize local breeds (in terms of both phenotypes and genotypes), which could

  18. Hop Cultivars and Breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Pest management decision making in hops varies among cultivars. Historically, the primary objective of hop breeding programs has been to increase the yield or characteristics associated with either bittering (high alpha-acids) or aroma (unique volatile oil profiles) cultivars. Other factors consid...

  19. Lettuce and spinach breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Lettuce and spinach production is beset by numerous biotic an abiotic challenges. This report to the California Leafy Greens Research Program annual meeting provides an update by the ‘Genetic Enhancement of Lettuce, Spinach, Melon, and Related Species’ project at Salinas on the genetics and breeding...

  20. Raspberry Breeding and Genetics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This chapter describes the origin, speciation, and history of improvement of the raspberries, Rubus section idaeobatus. The world industry in North America, Australasia, China, Europe, Eastern Europe, Africa, and South America and the breeding objectives of programs in those areas are discussed. Ger...

  1. Quantifying evolvability in small biological networks

    SciTech Connect

    Nemenman, Ilya; Mugler, Andrew; Ziv, Etay; Wiggins, Chris H

    2008-01-01

    The authors introduce a quantitative measure of the capacity of a small biological network to evolve. The measure is applied to a stochastic description of the experimental setup of Guet et al. (Science 2002, 296, pp. 1466), treating chemical inducers as functional inputs to biochemical networks and the expression of a reporter gene as the functional output. The authors take an information-theoretic approach, allowing the system to set parameters that optimise signal processing ability, thus enumerating each network's highest-fidelity functions. All networks studied are highly evolvable by the measure, meaning that change in function has little dependence on change in parameters. Moreover, each network's functions are connected by paths in the parameter space along which information is not significantly lowered, meaning a network may continuously change its functionality without completely losing it along the way. This property further underscores the evolvability of the networks.

  2. Why did heterospory evolve?

    PubMed

    Petersen, Kurt B; Burd, Martin

    2016-10-11

    The primitive land plant life cycle featured the production of spores of unimodal size, a condition called homospory. The evolution of bimodal size distributions with small male spores and large female spores, known as heterospory, was an innovation that occurred repeatedly in the history of land plants. The importance of desiccation-resistant spores for colonization of the land is well known, but the adaptive value of heterospory has never been well established. It was an addition to a sexual life cycle that already involved male and female gametes. Its role as a precursor to the evolution of seeds has received much attention, but this is an evolutionary consequence of heterospory that cannot explain the transition from homospory to heterospory (and the lack of evolutionary reversal from heterospory to homospory). Enforced outcrossing of gametophytes has often been mentioned in connection to heterospory, but we review the shortcomings of this argument as an explanation of the selective advantage of heterospory. Few alternative arguments concerning the selective forces favouring heterospory have been proposed, a paucity of attention that is surprising given the importance of this innovation in land plant evolution. In this review we highlight two ideas that may lead us to a better understanding of why heterospory evolved. First, models of optimal resource allocation - an approach that has been used for decades in evolutionary ecology to help understand parental investment and other life-history patterns - suggest that an evolutionary increase in spore size could reach a threshold at which small spores yielding small, sperm-producing gametophytes would return greater fitness per unit of resource investment than would large spores and bisexual gametophytes. With the advent of such microspores, megaspores would evolve under frequency-dependent selection. This argument can account for the appearance of heterospory in the Devonian, when increasingly tall and complex

  3. Advances in Diagnostics and Therapeutic Techniques in Breeding Behavior Disorders in Stallions.

    PubMed

    McDonnell, Sue M

    2016-12-01

    Despite the suboptimal aspects of domestic breeding conditions compared with the natural conditions under which their reproductive behavior evolved, most domestic stallions can adapt to management and breeding programs. Most respond adequately or quickly learn to safely abide the restraint and direction of a human handler, and can adapt to changes in methods of breeding for semen collection. If not, the problems can range from inadequate or variable sexual interest and response to overenthusiastic or aggressive response beyond the ability of the handlers to safely direct and control. This article discusses veterinary evaluation as well as housing and handling strategies for addressing stallion breeding behavior problems.

  4. Evolving a photosynthetic organelle.

    PubMed

    Nakayama, Takuro; Archibald, John M

    2012-04-24

    The evolution of plastids from cyanobacteria is believed to represent a singularity in the history of life. The enigmatic amoeba Paulinella and its 'recently' acquired photosynthetic inclusions provide a fascinating system through which to gain fresh insight into how endosymbionts become organelles.The plastids, or chloroplasts, of algae and plants evolved from cyanobacteria by endosymbiosis. This landmark event conferred on eukaryotes the benefits of photosynthesis--the conversion of solar energy into chemical energy--and in so doing had a huge impact on the course of evolution and the climate of Earth 1. From the present state of plastids, however, it is difficult to trace the evolutionary steps involved in this momentous development, because all modern-day plastids have fully integrated into their hosts. Paulinella chromatophora is a unicellular eukaryote that bears photosynthetic entities called chromatophores that are derived from cyanobacteria and has thus received much attention as a possible example of an organism in the early stages of organellogenesis. Recent studies have unlocked the genomic secrets of its chromatophore 23 and provided concrete evidence that the Paulinella chromatophore is a bona fide photosynthetic organelle 4. The question is how Paulinella can help us to understand the process by which an endosymbiont is converted into an organelle.

  5. Evolving synergetic interactions

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Bin; Arranz, Jordi; Du, Jinming; Zhou, Da; Traulsen, Arne

    2016-01-01

    Cooperators forgo their own interests to benefit others. This reduces their fitness and thus cooperators are not likely to spread based on natural selection. Nonetheless, cooperation is widespread on every level of biological organization ranging from bacterial communities to human society. Mathematical models can help to explain under which circumstances cooperation evolves. Evolutionary game theory is a powerful mathematical tool to depict the interactions between cooperators and defectors. Classical models typically involve either pairwise interactions between individuals or a linear superposition of these interactions. For interactions within groups, however, synergetic effects may arise: their outcome is not just the sum of its parts. This is because the payoffs via a single group interaction can be different from the sum of any collection of two-player interactions. Assuming that all interactions start from pairs, how can such synergetic multiplayer games emerge from simpler pairwise interactions? Here, we present a mathematical model that captures the transition from pairwise interactions to synergetic multiplayer ones. We assume that different social groups have different breaking rates. We show that non-uniform breaking rates do foster the emergence of synergy, even though individuals always interact in pairs. Our work sheds new light on the mechanisms underlying such synergetic interactions. PMID:27466437

  6. Plant breeding on the front: imperialism, war, and exploitation.

    PubMed

    Elina, Olga; Heim, Susanne; Roll-Hansen, Nils

    2005-01-01

    This paper examines the development of plant-breeding science in the context of the booming genetic research and autarky policy of the 1930s as well as during World War II in National Socialist-occupied Europe. Soviet scientists, especially Nikolai Vavilov and his VIR institute, had a leading position in the international plant-breeding science of the 1920s. During World War II, German scientists, namely experts from the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Plant Breeding, usurped Soviet institutes and valuable seed collections. In contrast, plant-breeding research in occupied Scandinavia continued with relatively little disturbance. The paper compares behavior of German, Soviet, and Norwegian plant-breeding scientists under the Nazi regime.

  7. Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis: evolving concepts.

    PubMed

    Ryu, Jay H; Moua, Teng; Daniels, Craig E; Hartman, Thomas E; Yi, Eunhee S; Utz, James P; Limper, Andrew H

    2014-08-01

    Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) occurs predominantly in middle-aged and older adults and accounts for 20% to 30% of interstitial lung diseases. It is usually progressive, resulting in respiratory failure and death. Diagnostic criteria for IPF have evolved over the years, and IPF is currently defined as a disease characterized by the histopathologic pattern of usual interstitial pneumonia occurring in the absence of an identifiable cause of lung injury. Understanding of the pathogenesis of IPF has shifted away from chronic inflammation and toward dysregulated fibroproliferative repair in response to alveolar epithelial injury. Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is likely a heterogeneous disorder caused by various interactions between genetic components and environmental exposures. High-resolution computed tomography can be diagnostic in the presence of typical findings such as bilateral reticular opacities associated with traction bronchiectasis/bronchiolectasis in a predominantly basal and subpleural distribution, along with subpleural honeycombing. In other circumstances, a surgical lung biopsy may be needed. The clinical course of IPF can be unpredictable and may be punctuated by acute deteriorations (acute exacerbation). Although progress continues in unraveling the mechanisms of IPF, effective therapy has remained elusive. Thus, clinicians and patients need to reach informed decisions regarding management options including lung transplant. The findings in this review were based on a literature search of PubMed using the search terms idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and usual interstitial pneumonia, limited to human studies in the English language published from January 1, 2000, through December 31, 2013, and supplemented by key references published before the year 2000.

  8. Evolving Indications for Tips.

    PubMed

    Smith, Mitchell; Durham, Janette

    2016-03-01

    Transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt creation is a well-established therapy for refractory variceal bleeding and refractory ascites in patients who do not tolerate repeated large volume paracentesis. Experience and technical improvements including covered stents have led to improved TIPS outcomes that have encouraged an expanded application. Evidence for other less frequent indications continues to accumulate, including the indications of primary prophylaxis in patients with high-risk acute variceal bleeding, gastric and ectopic variceal bleeding, primary treatment of medically refractory ascites, recurrent refractory ascites following liver transplantation, hepatic hydrothorax, hepatorenal syndrome, Budd-Chiari syndrome, and portal vein thrombosis. Treatment of patients with high-risk acute variceal bleeding with early TIPS and using transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunts as a primary therapy rather than large volume paracentesis for refractory ascites would likely be the 2 circumstances that permit expansion in the frequency of TIPS procedures. The remaining populations discussed above are relatively rare.

  9. Genetic comparison of breeding schemes based on semen importation and local breeding schemes: framework and application to Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Vargas, B; van Arendonk, J A M

    2004-05-01

    Local breeding schemes for Holstein cattle of Costa Rica were compared with the current practice based on continuous semen importation (SI) by deterministic simulation. Comparison was made on the basis of genetic response and correlation between breeding goals. A local breeding goal was defined on the basis of prevailing production circumstances and compared against a typical breeding goal for an exporting country. Differences in genetic response were <3%, and the correlation between breeding goals was 0.99. Therefore, difference between breeding objectives proved negligible. For the evaluation of genetic response, the current scheme based on SI was evaluated against a progeny testing (PT) scheme and a closed nucleus (CN) breeding scheme, both local. Selection intensities and accuracy of selection were defined according to current population size and reproduction efficiency parameters. When genotype x environment interaction (G x E) was ignored, SI was the strategy with the highest genetic response: 5.0% above the CN breeding scheme and 33.2% above PT. A correlation between breeding values in both countries lower than one was assumed to assess the effect of G x E. This resulted in permanent effects on the relative efficiencies of breeding strategies because of the reduction in the rate of genetic response when SI was used. When the genetic correlation was assumed equal to 0.75, the genetic response achieved with SI was reduced at the same level as local PT. When an initial difference in average genetic merit of the populations was assumed, this only had a temporal effect on the relative ranking of strategies, which is reverted after some years of selection because the rate of change in genetic responses remains unchanged. Given that the actual levels of genetic correlation between countries may be around 0.60, it was concluded that a local breeding scheme based on a nucleus herd could provide better results than the current strategy based on SI.

  10. Biotechnology and apple breeding in Japan

    PubMed Central

    Igarashi, Megumi; Hatsuyama, Yoshimichi; Harada, Takeo; Fukasawa-Akada, Tomoko

    2016-01-01

    Apple is a fruit crop of significant economic importance, and breeders world wide continue to develop novel cultivars with improved characteristics. The lengthy juvenile period and the large field space required to grow apple populations have imposed major limitations on breeding. Various molecular biological techniques have been employed to make apple breeding easier. Transgenic technology has facilitated the development of apples with resistance to fungal or bacterial diseases, improved fruit quality, or root stocks with better rooting or dwarfing ability. DNA markers for disease resistance (scab, powdery mildew, fire-blight, Alternaria blotch) and fruit skin color have also been developed, and marker-assisted selection (MAS) has been employed in breeding programs. In the last decade, genomic sequences and chromosome maps of various cultivars have become available, allowing the development of large SNP arrays, enabling efficient QTL mapping and genomic selection (GS). In recent years, new technologies for genetic improvement, such as trans-grafting, virus vectors, and genome-editing, have emerged. Using these techniques, no foreign genes are present in the final product, and some of them show considerable promise for application to apple breeding. PMID:27069388

  11. Disgust: Evolved Function and Structure

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tybur, Joshua M.; Lieberman, Debra; Kurzban, Robert; DeScioli, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Interest in and research on disgust has surged over the past few decades. The field, however, still lacks a coherent theoretical framework for understanding the evolved function or functions of disgust. Here we present such a framework, emphasizing 2 levels of analysis: that of evolved function and that of information processing. Although there is…

  12. Diversity and Affirmative Action: Evolving Principles and Continuing Legal Battles.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Palmer, Scott R.

    This chapter reviews the legal standards governing affirmative action in higher education, examining the diversity rationale and contrasting the cases of Hopwood v. Texas and Wittmer v. Peters, which were decided in 1996. It discusses: the legal standard governing affirmative action in higher education; the remedial interest in overcoming the…

  13. Evolving virtual creatures and catapults.

    PubMed

    Chaumont, Nicolas; Egli, Richard; Adami, Christoph

    2007-01-01

    We present a system that can evolve the morphology and the controller of virtual walking and block-throwing creatures (catapults) using a genetic algorithm. The system is based on Sims' work, implemented as a flexible platform with an off-the-shelf dynamics engine. Experiments aimed at evolving Sims-type walkers resulted in the emergence of various realistic gaits while using fairly simple objective functions. Due to the flexibility of the system, drastically different morphologies and functions evolved with only minor modifications to the system and objective function. For example, various throwing techniques evolved when selecting for catapults that propel a block as far as possible. Among the strategies and morphologies evolved, we find the drop-kick strategy, as well as the systematic invention of the principle behind the wheel, when allowing mutations to the projectile.

  14. Cooperative breeding in oscine passerines: does sociality inhibit speciation?

    PubMed Central

    Cockburn, Andrew

    2003-01-01

    Cooperative breeding in birds is much more prevalent than has been previously realized, occurring in 18.5% of oscine passerines known to have biparental care, and is the predominant social system of some ancient oscine clades. Cooperation is distributed unevenly in clades that contain both cooperative and pair breeders, and is usually confined to a few related genera in which it can be ubiquitous. Cooperative clades are species poor compared with pair-breeding clades, because pair breeders evolve migratory habits, speciate on oceanic islands and are more likely to have distributions spread across more than one biogeographic region. These differences reflect the increased capacity for colonization by pair breeders because their young disperse. Thus cooperative breeding has macroevolutionary consequences by restricting rates of speciation and macroecological implications by influencing the assembly of island and migrant faunas. PMID:14613606

  15. Survival of the fastest: Evolving wings for flapping flight

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramananarivo, Sophie; Mitchel, Thomas; Ristroph, Leif

    2014-11-01

    To optimize flapping flight with regard to wing shape, we use an evolutionary or genetic algorithm to improve the forward speed of 3d-printed wings or hydrofoils that heave up-and-down and self-propel within water. In this scheme, ``genes'' are mathematical parameters specifying wing shape, and ``breeding'' involves the merging and mutation of genes from two parent wings to form a child. A wing's swimming speed is its ``fitness'', which dictates the likelihood of breeding and thus passing on its genes to the next generation. We find that this iterative process leads to marked improvements in relatively few generations, and several distinct shape features are shared among the fastest wings. We also investigate the favorable flow structures produced by these elite swimmers and compare their shape and performance to biologically evolved wings, fins, tails, and flippers.

  16. RosBREED: Enabling Marker-Assisted Breeding In Rosaceae

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    RosBREED will create a national, dynamic, sustained effort in research, infrastructure establishment, training, and extension for applying marker-assisted breeding (MAB) to deliver improved plant materials more efficiently and rapidly. The Rosaceae family (including apple, peach, sweet and tart cher...

  17. How did the cilium evolve?

    PubMed

    Satir, Peter; Mitchell, David R; Jékely, Gáspár

    2008-01-01

    The cilium is a characteristic organelle of eukaryotes constructed from over 600 proteins. Bacterial flagella are entirely different. 9 + 2 motile cilia evolved before the divergence of the last eukaryotic common ancestor (LECA). This chapter explores, compares, and contrasts two potential pathways of evolution: (1) via invasion of a centriolar-like virus and (2) via autogenous formation from a pre-existing microtubule-organizing center (MTOC). In either case, the intraflagellar transport (IFT) machinery that is nearly universally required for the assembly and maintenance of cilia derived from the evolving intracellular vesicular transport system. The sensory function of cilia evolved first and the ciliary axoneme evolved gradually with ciliary motility, an important selection mechanism, as one of the driving forces.

  18. Developments in European horse breeding and consequences for veterinarians in equine reproduction.

    PubMed

    Aurich, J; Aurich, C

    2006-08-01

    The liberalization of European animal breeding legislation and an increasing diversity of equestrian sports have led to a constant rise in the number of horse breeds and breed registries. In addition to the trend towards more and smaller breed registries, there is another trend towards an international expansion of the bigger established sport horse breeds. Regional breeds, at least in smaller countries, may no longer be able to run an independent breeding programme. The typical horse breeder, in the future, will be a female and qualified in equestrian sports. Artificial insemination (AI) mainly with fresh or cooled-transported semen has become a major breeding tool, allowing breeders all over Europe to benefit from the best stallions of most breeds. New AI techniques such as low-dose insemination may remain restricted to individual stallions and also the interest of breeding programmes in sex determination of foals via semen sorting is limited. Embryo transfer and associated techniques, although allowed by most breeds, have not contributed significantly to genetic progress in European sport horses so far. A potential use of cloning may be to produce gonad-intact copies from geldings that have performed to a superior level. With a more open and international structure of horse breeding and increased use of AI, equine reproduction and biotechnology should be emphasized by veterinary curricula and continuing professional education programmes.

  19. Natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability.

    PubMed

    Graves, Christopher J; Ros, Vera I D; Stevenson, Brian; Sniegowski, Paul D; Brisson, Dustin

    2013-01-01

    The hypothesis that evolvability - the capacity to evolve by natural selection - is itself the object of natural selection is highly intriguing but remains controversial due in large part to a paucity of direct experimental evidence. The antigenic variation mechanisms of microbial pathogens provide an experimentally tractable system to test whether natural selection has favored mechanisms that increase evolvability. Many antigenic variation systems consist of paralogous unexpressed 'cassettes' that recombine into an expression site to rapidly alter the expressed protein. Importantly, the magnitude of antigenic change is a function of the genetic diversity among the unexpressed cassettes. Thus, evidence that selection favors among-cassette diversity is direct evidence that natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability. We used the Lyme disease bacterium, Borrelia burgdorferi, as a model to test the prediction that natural selection favors amino acid diversity among unexpressed vls cassettes and thereby promotes evolvability in a primary surface antigen, VlsE. The hypothesis that diversity among vls cassettes is favored by natural selection was supported in each B. burgdorferi strain analyzed using both classical (dN/dS ratios) and Bayesian population genetic analyses of genetic sequence data. This hypothesis was also supported by the conservation of highly mutable tandem-repeat structures across B. burgdorferi strains despite a near complete absence of sequence conservation. Diversification among vls cassettes due to natural selection and mutable repeat structures promotes long-term antigenic evolvability of VlsE. These findings provide a direct demonstration that molecular mechanisms that enhance evolvability of surface antigens are an evolutionary adaptation. The molecular evolutionary processes identified here can serve as a model for the evolution of antigenic evolvability in many pathogens which utilize similar strategies to establish chronic infections.

  20. Radiation-induced mutations and plant breeding

    SciTech Connect

    Naqvi, S.H.M.

    1985-01-01

    Ionizing radiation could cause genetic changes in an organism and could modify gene linkages. The induction of mutation through radiation is random and the probability of getting the desired genetic change is low but can be increased by manipulating different parameters such as dose rate, physical conditions under which the material has been irradiated, etc. Induced mutations have been used as a supplement to conventional plant breeding, particularly for creating genetic variability for specific characters such as improved plant structure, pest and disease resistance, and desired changes in maturity period; more than 200 varieties of crop plants have been developed by this technique. The Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission has used this technique fruitfully to evolve better germplasm in cotton, rice, chickpea, wheat and mungbean; some of the mutants have become popular commercial varieties. This paper describes some uses of radiation induced mutations and the results achieved in Pakistan so far.

  1. Comparison of 2 Rat Breeding Schemes Using Conventional Caging

    PubMed Central

    Allen, Kenneth P; Dwinell, Melinda R; Zappa, Allison; Temple, Anne; Thulin, Joseph

    2013-01-01

    Compared with earlier editions, the eighth edition of the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals recommends more cage floor space for female rats with litters. As such, conventional rat cages often do not supply the recommended floor space to maintain 2 adult rats and a litter in the same cage. We evaluated 2 breeding schemes using traditional cages that afford 140 in.2 (903 cm2) of floor space: (1) monogamous pairs housed continuously and (2) monogamous pairs cohoused intermittently with removal of the male rat after parturition. The results did not demonstrate a significant difference between breeding schemes in generation time, number of litters per breeding pair, percentage of litters weaned, number of pups born per breeding pair, and number of pups weaned per breeding pair. However, the average weaning weight of pups was significantly higher with scheme 1 compared with scheme 2. Collectively, these results indicate continuous housing of monogamous breeding pairs may be preferable to intermittent housing when conventional cages are used. PMID:23562096

  2. Robustness to Faults Promotes Evolvability: Insights from Evolving Digital Circuits.

    PubMed

    Milano, Nicola; Nolfi, Stefano

    2016-01-01

    We demonstrate how the need to cope with operational faults enables evolving circuits to find more fit solutions. The analysis of the results obtained in different experimental conditions indicates that, in absence of faults, evolution tends to select circuits that are small and have low phenotypic variability and evolvability. The need to face operation faults, instead, drives evolution toward the selection of larger circuits that are truly robust with respect to genetic variations and that have a greater level of phenotypic variability and evolvability. Overall our results indicate that the need to cope with operation faults leads to the selection of circuits that have a greater probability to generate better circuits as a result of genetic variation with respect to a control condition in which circuits are not subjected to faults.

  3. Mobile computing acceptance grows as applications evolve.

    PubMed

    Porn, Louis M; Patrick, Kelly

    2002-01-01

    Handheld devices are becoming more cost-effective to own, and their use in healthcare environments is increasing. Handheld devices currently are being used for e-prescribing, charge capture, and accessing daily schedules and reference tools. Future applications may include education on medications, dictation, order entry, and test-results reporting. Selecting the right handheld device requires careful analysis of current and future applications, as well as vendor expertise. It is important to recognize the technology will continue to evolve over the next three years.

  4. Evolving role of pharmaceutical physicians in the industry: Indian perspective.

    PubMed

    Patil, Anant; Rajadhyaksha, Viraj

    2012-01-01

    The Indian pharmaceutical industry, like any other industry, has undergone significant change in the last decade. The role of a Medical advisor has always been of paramount importance in the pharmaceutical companies in India. On account of the evolving medical science and the competitive environment, the medical advisor's role is also increasingly becoming critical. In India, with changes in regulatory rules, safety surveillance, and concept of medical liaisons, the role of the medical advisor is evolving continuously and is further likely to evolve in the coming years in important areas like health economics, public private partnerships, and strategic planning.

  5. Evolving role of pharmaceutical physicians in the industry: Indian perspective

    PubMed Central

    Patil, Anant; Rajadhyaksha, Viraj

    2012-01-01

    The Indian pharmaceutical industry, like any other industry, has undergone significant change in the last decade. The role of a Medical advisor has always been of paramount importance in the pharmaceutical companies in India. On account of the evolving medical science and the competitive environment, the medical advisor's role is also increasingly becoming critical. In India, with changes in regulatory rules, safety surveillance, and concept of medical liaisons, the role of the medical advisor is evolving continuously and is further likely to evolve in the coming years in important areas like health economics, public private partnerships, and strategic planning. PMID:22347701

  6. Genetic distinctiveness of the Herdwick sheep breed and two other locally adapted hill breeds of the UK.

    PubMed

    Bowles, Dianna; Carson, Amanda; Isaac, Peter

    2014-01-01

    There is considerable interest in locally adapted breeds of livestock as reservoirs of genetic diversity that may provide important fitness traits for future use in agriculture. In marginal areas, these animals contribute to food security and extract value from land unsuitable for other systems of farming. In England, close to 50% of the national sheep flock is farmed on grassland designated as disadvantaged areas for agricultural production. Many of these areas are in the uplands, where some native breeds of sheep continue to be commercially farmed only in highly localised geographical regions to which they are adapted. This study focuses on three of these breeds, selected for their adaptation to near identical environments and their geographical concentration in regions close to one another. Our objective has been to use retrotyping, microsatellites and single nucleotide polymorphisms to explore the origins of the breeds and whether, despite their similar adaptations and proximity, they are genetically distinctive. We find the three breeds each have a surprisingly different pattern of retrovirus insertions into their genomes compared with one another and with other UK breeds. Uniquely, there is a high incidence of the R0 retrotype in the Herdwick population, characteristic of a primitive genome found previously in very few breeds worldwide and none in the UK mainland. The Herdwick and Rough Fells carry two rare retroviral insertion events, common only in Texels, suggesting sheep populations in the northern uplands have a historical association with the original pin-tail sheep of Texel Island. Microsatellite data and analyses of SNPs associated with RXFP2 (horn traits) and PRLR (reproductive performance traits) also distinguished the three breeds. Significantly, an SNP linked to TMEM154, a locus controlling susceptibility to infection by Maedi-Visna, indicated that all three native hill breeds have a lower than average risk of infection to the lentivirus.

  7. RosBREED: Enabling Marker-Assisted Breeding in Rosaceae

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genomics research has not yet been translated into routine practical application in breeding Rosaceae fruit crops (peach, apple, strawberry, cherry, apricot, pear, raspberry, etc.). Through dedicated efforts of many researchers worldwide, a wealth of genomics resources has accumulated, including ES...

  8. Animal breeding and disease

    PubMed Central

    Nicholas, Frank W

    2005-01-01

    Single-locus disorders in domesticated animals were among the first Mendelian traits to be documented after the rediscovery of Mendelism, and to be included in early linkage maps. The use of linkage maps and (increasingly) comparative genomics has been central to the identification of the causative gene for single-locus disorders of considerable practical importance. The ‘score-card’ in domestic animals is now more than 100 disorders for which the molecular lesion has been identified and hence for which a DNA test is available. Because of the limited lifespan of any such test, a cost-effective and hence popular means of protecting the intellectual property inherent in a DNA test is not to publish the discovery. While understandable, this practice creates a disconcerting precedent. For multifactorial disorders that are scored on an all-or-none basis or into many classes, the effectiveness of control schemes could be greatly enhanced by selection on estimated breeding values for liability. Genetic variation for resistance to pathogens and parasites is ubiquitous. Selection for resistance can therefore be successful. Because of the technical and welfare challenges inherent in the requirement to expose animals to pathogens or parasites in order to be able to select for resistance, there is a very active search for DNA markers for resistance. The first practical fruits of this research were seen in 2002, with the launch of a national scrapie control programme in the UK. PMID:16048793

  9. Mutation breeding by ion implantation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Zengliang; Deng, Jianguo; He, Jianjun; Huo, Yuping; Wu, Yuejin; Wang, Xuedong; Lui, Guifu

    1991-07-01

    Ion implantation as a new mutagenic method has been used in the rice breeding program since 1986, and for mutation breeding of other crops later. It has been shown, in principle and in practice, that this method has many outstanding advantages: lower damage rate; higher mutation rate and wider mutational spectrum. Many new lines of rice with higher yield rate; broader disease resistance; shorter growing period but higher quality have been bred from ion beam induced mutants. Some of these lines have been utilized for the intersubspecies hybridization. Several new lines of cotton, wheat and other crops are now in breeding. Some biophysical effects of ion implantation for crop seeds have been studied.

  10. [Exaggerated breed characteristics in dogs].

    PubMed

    Wilting, M M; Endenburg, N

    2012-01-01

    Dutch dog owners seem to be aware of bad dog breeding practices with regard to exaggerated breed characteristics that are detrimental to the dog's welfare. Yet they do not always look for these features when buying a dog. Most dog owners think that veterinarians could have an important role in preventing these exaggerated physical traits, by providing information about these traits and taking action in their capacity as veterinarian. Articles 36 and 55 of the Dutch GWWD (animal health and welfare law) provide opportunities to act against the breeding of dogs with exaggerated genetic traits.

  11. Evolving Sensitivity Balances Boolean Networks

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Jamie X.; Turner, Matthew S.

    2012-01-01

    We investigate the sensitivity of Boolean Networks (BNs) to mutations. We are interested in Boolean Networks as a model of Gene Regulatory Networks (GRNs). We adopt Ribeiro and Kauffman’s Ergodic Set and use it to study the long term dynamics of a BN. We define the sensitivity of a BN to be the mean change in its Ergodic Set structure under all possible loss of interaction mutations. Insilico experiments were used to selectively evolve BNs for sensitivity to losing interactions. We find that maximum sensitivity was often achievable and resulted in the BNs becoming topologically balanced, i.e. they evolve towards network structures in which they have a similar number of inhibitory and excitatory interactions. In terms of the dynamics, the dominant sensitivity strategy that evolved was to build BNs with Ergodic Sets dominated by a single long limit cycle which is easily destabilised by mutations. We discuss the relevance of our findings in the context of Stem Cell Differentiation and propose a relationship between pluripotent stem cells and our evolved sensitive networks. PMID:22586459

  12. Slippery Texts and Evolving Literacies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mackey, Margaret

    2007-01-01

    The idea of "slippery texts" provides a useful descriptor for materials that mutate and evolve across different media. Eight adult gamers, encountering the slippery text "American McGee's Alice," demonstrate a variety of ways in which players attempt to manage their attention as they encounter a new text with many resonances. The range of their…

  13. Thermal and evolved gas analyzer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, M. S.; Boynton, W. V.; James, R. L.; Verts, W. T.; Bailey, S. H.; Hamara, D. K.

    1998-01-01

    The Thermal and Evolved Gas Analyzer (TEGA) instrument will perform calorimetry and evolved gas analysis on soil samples collected from the Martian surface. TEGA is one of three instruments, along with a robotic arm, that form the Mars Volatile and Climate Survey (MVACS) payload. The other instruments are a stereo surface imager, built by Peter Smith of the University of Arizona and a meteorological station, built by JPL. The MVACS lander will investigate a Martian landing site at approximately 70 deg south latitude. Launch will take place from Kennedy Space Center in January, 1999. The TEGA project started in February, 1996. In the intervening 24 months, a flight instrument concept has been designed, prototyped, built as an engineering model and flight model, and tested. The instrument performs laboratory-quality differential-scanning calorimetry (DSC) over the temperature range of Mars ambient to 1400K. Low-temperature volatiles (water and carbon dioxide ices) and the carbonates will be analyzed in this temperature range. Carbonates melt and evolve carbon dioxide at temperatures above 600 C. Evolved oxygen (down to a concentration of 1 ppm) is detected, and C02 and water vapor and the isotopic variations of C02 and water vapor are detected and their concentrations measured. The isotopic composition provides important tests of the theory of solar system formation.

  14. Signing Apes and Evolving Linguistics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stokoe, William C.

    Linguistics retains from its antecedents, philology and the study of sacred writings, some of their apologetic and theological bias. Thus it has not been able to face squarely the question how linguistic function may have evolved from animal communication. Chimpanzees' use of signs from American Sign Language forces re-examination of language…

  15. How evolvable are polarization machines?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laan, Liedewij; Murray, Andrew

    2012-02-01

    In many different cell types proper polarization is essential for cell function. Polarization mechanisms however, differ between cell types and even closely related species use a variety of polarization machines. Budding yeast, for example, depends on several parallel mechanisms to establish polarity. One mechanism (i) depends on reaction and diffusion of proteins in the membrane. Another one (ii) depends on reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton. So why does yeast use several mechanisms simultaneously? Can yeast also polarize robustly in the absence of one of them? We addressed these questions by evolving budding yeast in the absence of mechanism (i) or (ii). We deleted a mechanism by deleting one or two genes that are essential for its function. After the deletion of either mechanism the growth rate of cells was highly decreased (2-5 fold) and their cell shape was highly perturbed. Subsequently, we evolved these cells for 10 days. Surprisingly, the evolved cells rapidly overcame most of their polarity defects. They grow at 0.9x wildtype growth rate and their cell shape is signifigantly less perturbed. Now we will study how these cells rescued polarization. Did they fix the deleted mechanism, strengthen other mechanisms or evolve a completely new one?

  16. Breeding gravitational lenses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liesenborgs, J.; de Rijcke, S.; Dejonghe, H.; Bekaert, P.

    2011-03-01

    Gravitational lenses are a spectacular astrophysical phenomenon, a cosmic mirage caused by the gravitational deflection of light in which multiple images of a same background object can be seen. Their beauty is only exceeded by their usefulness, as the gravitational lens effect is a direct probe of the total mass of the deflecting object. Furthermore, since the image configuration arising from the gravitational lens effect depends on the exact gravitational potential of the deflector, it even holds the promise of learning about the distribution of the mass. In this presentation, a method for extracting the information encoded in the images and reconstructing the mass distribution is presented. Being a non-parametric method, it avoids making a priori assumptions about the shape of the mass distribution. At the core of the procedure lies a genetic algorithm, an optimization strategy inspired by Darwin's principle of ``survival of the fittest''. One only needs to specify a criterion to decide if one particular trial solution is deemed better than another, and the genetic algorithm will ``breed'' appropriate solutions to the problem. In a similar way, one can create a multi-objective genetic algorithm, capable of optimizing several fitness criteria at the same time. This provides a very flexible way to incorporate all the available information in the gravitational lens system: not only the positions and shapes of the multiple images are used, but also the so-called ``null space'', i.e. the area in which no such images can be seen. The effectiveness of this approach is illustrated using simulated data, which allows one to compare the reconstruction to the true mass distribution.

  17. Efficient Breeding by Genomic Mating.

    PubMed

    Akdemir, Deniz; Sánchez, Julio I

    2016-01-01

    Selection in breeding programs can be done by using phenotypes (phenotypic selection), pedigree relationship (breeding value selection) or molecular markers (marker assisted selection or genomic selection). All these methods are based on truncation selection, focusing on the best performance of parents before mating. In this article we proposed an approach to breeding, named genomic mating, which focuses on mating instead of truncation selection. Genomic mating uses information in a similar fashion to genomic selection but includes information on complementation of parents to be mated. Following the efficiency frontier surface, genomic mating uses concepts of estimated breeding values, risk (usefulness) and coefficient of ancestry to optimize mating between parents. We used a genetic algorithm to find solutions to this optimization problem and the results from our simulations comparing genomic selection, phenotypic selection and the mating approach indicate that current approach for breeding complex traits is more favorable than phenotypic and genomic selection. Genomic mating is similar to genomic selection in terms of estimating marker effects, but in genomic mating the genetic information and the estimated marker effects are used to decide which genotypes should be crossed to obtain the next breeding population.

  18. Efficient Breeding by Genomic Mating

    PubMed Central

    Akdemir, Deniz; Sánchez, Julio I.

    2016-01-01

    Selection in breeding programs can be done by using phenotypes (phenotypic selection), pedigree relationship (breeding value selection) or molecular markers (marker assisted selection or genomic selection). All these methods are based on truncation selection, focusing on the best performance of parents before mating. In this article we proposed an approach to breeding, named genomic mating, which focuses on mating instead of truncation selection. Genomic mating uses information in a similar fashion to genomic selection but includes information on complementation of parents to be mated. Following the efficiency frontier surface, genomic mating uses concepts of estimated breeding values, risk (usefulness) and coefficient of ancestry to optimize mating between parents. We used a genetic algorithm to find solutions to this optimization problem and the results from our simulations comparing genomic selection, phenotypic selection and the mating approach indicate that current approach for breeding complex traits is more favorable than phenotypic and genomic selection. Genomic mating is similar to genomic selection in terms of estimating marker effects, but in genomic mating the genetic information and the estimated marker effects are used to decide which genotypes should be crossed to obtain the next breeding population. PMID:27965707

  19. Hybrid breeding in autogamous cereals.

    PubMed

    Longin, Carl Friedrich Horst; Mühleisen, Jonathan; Maurer, Hans Peter; Zhang, Hongliang; Gowda, Manje; Reif, Jochen Christoph

    2012-10-01

    Hybrid breeding in autogamous cereals has a long history of attempts with moderate success. There is a vast amount of literature investigating the potential problems and solutions, but until now, market share of hybrids is still a niche compared to line varieties. Our aim was to summarize the status quo of hybrid breeding efforts for the autogamous cereals wheat, rice, barley, and triticale. Furthermore, the research needs for a successful hybrid breeding in autogamous cereals are intensively discussed. To our opinion, the basic requirements for a successful hybrid breeding in autogamous cereals are fulfilled. Nevertheless, optimization of the existing hybridization systems is urgently required and should be coupled with the development of clear male and female pool concepts. We present a quantitative genetic framework as a first step to compare selection gain of hybrid versus line breeding. The lack of precise empirical estimates of relevant quantitative genetic parameters, however, is currently the major bottleneck for a robust evaluation of the potential of hybrid breeding in autogamous cereals.

  20. Non-uniform Evolving Hypergraphs and Weighted Evolving Hypergraphs

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Jin-Li; Zhu, Xin-Yun; Suo, Qi; Forrest, Jeffrey

    2016-01-01

    Firstly, this paper proposes a non-uniform evolving hypergraph model with nonlinear preferential attachment and an attractiveness. This model allows nodes to arrive in batches according to a Poisson process and to form hyperedges with existing batches of nodes. Both the number of arriving nodes and that of chosen existing nodes are random variables so that the size of each hyperedge is non-uniform. This paper establishes the characteristic equation of hyperdegrees, calculates changes in the hyperdegree of each node, and obtains the stationary average hyperdegree distribution of the model by employing the Poisson process theory and the characteristic equation. Secondly, this paper constructs a model for weighted evolving hypergraphs that couples the establishment of new hyperedges, nodes and the dynamical evolution of the weights. Furthermore, what is obtained are respectively the stationary average hyperdegree and hyperstrength distributions by using the hyperdegree distribution of the established unweighted model above so that the weighted evolving hypergraph exhibits a scale-free behavior for both hyperdegree and hyperstrength distributions. PMID:27845334

  1. Coupled oscillators on evolving networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, R. K.; Bagarti, Trilochan

    2016-12-01

    In this work we study coupled oscillators on evolving networks. We find that the steady state behavior of the system is governed by the relative values of the spread in natural frequencies and the global coupling strength. For coupling strong in comparison to the spread in frequencies, the system of oscillators synchronize and when coupling strength and spread in frequencies are large, a phenomenon similar to amplitude death is observed. The network evolution provides a mechanism to build inter-oscillator connections and once a dynamic equilibrium is achieved, oscillators evolve according to their local interactions. We also find that the steady state properties change by the presence of additional time scales. We demonstrate these results based on numerical calculations studying dynamical evolution of limit-cycle and van der Pol oscillators.

  2. Evolvable Hardware for Space Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lohn, Jason; Globus, Al; Hornby, Gregory; Larchev, Gregory; Kraus, William

    2004-01-01

    This article surveys the research of the Evolvable Systems Group at NASA Ames Research Center. Over the past few years, our group has developed the ability to use evolutionary algorithms in a variety of NASA applications ranging from spacecraft antenna design, fault tolerance for programmable logic chips, atomic force field parameter fitting, analog circuit design, and earth observing satellite scheduling. In some of these applications, evolutionary algorithms match or improve on human performance.

  3. Evolving Systems and Adaptive Key Component Control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frost, Susan A.; Balas, Mark J.

    2009-01-01

    We propose a new framework called Evolving Systems to describe the self-assembly, or autonomous assembly, of actively controlled dynamical subsystems into an Evolved System with a higher purpose. An introduction to Evolving Systems and exploration of the essential topics of the control and stability properties of Evolving Systems is provided. This chapter defines a framework for Evolving Systems, develops theory and control solutions for fundamental characteristics of Evolving Systems, and provides illustrative examples of Evolving Systems and their control with adaptive key component controllers.

  4. Harnessing Diversity in Wheat to Enhance Grain Yield, Climate Resilience, Disease and Insect Pest Resistance and Nutrition Through Conventional and Modern Breeding Approaches.

    PubMed

    Mondal, Suchismita; Rutkoski, Jessica E; Velu, Govindan; Singh, Pawan K; Crespo-Herrera, Leonardo A; Guzmán, Carlos; Bhavani, Sridhar; Lan, Caixia; He, Xinyao; Singh, Ravi P

    2016-01-01

    Current trends in population growth and consumption patterns continue to increase the demand for wheat, a key cereal for global food security. Further, multiple abiotic challenges due to climate change and evolving pathogen and pests pose a major concern for increasing wheat production globally. Triticeae species comprising of primary, secondary, and tertiary gene pools represent a rich source of genetic diversity in wheat. The conventional breeding strategies of direct hybridization, backcrossing and selection have successfully introgressed a number of desirable traits associated with grain yield, adaptation to abiotic stresses, disease resistance, and bio-fortification of wheat varieties. However, it is time consuming to incorporate genes conferring tolerance/resistance to multiple stresses in a single wheat variety by conventional approaches due to limitations in screening methods and the lower probabilities of combining desirable alleles. Efforts on developing innovative breeding strategies, novel tools and utilizing genetic diversity for new genes/alleles are essential to improve productivity, reduce vulnerability to diseases and pests and enhance nutritional quality. New technologies of high-throughput phenotyping, genome sequencing and genomic selection are promising approaches to maximize progeny screening and selection to accelerate the genetic gains in breeding more productive varieties. Use of cisgenic techniques to transfer beneficial alleles and their combinations within related species also offer great promise especially to achieve durable rust resistance.

  5. Harnessing Diversity in Wheat to Enhance Grain Yield, Climate Resilience, Disease and Insect Pest Resistance and Nutrition Through Conventional and Modern Breeding Approaches

    PubMed Central

    Mondal, Suchismita; Rutkoski, Jessica E.; Velu, Govindan; Singh, Pawan K.; Crespo-Herrera, Leonardo A.; Guzmán, Carlos; Bhavani, Sridhar; Lan, Caixia; He, Xinyao; Singh, Ravi P.

    2016-01-01

    Current trends in population growth and consumption patterns continue to increase the demand for wheat, a key cereal for global food security. Further, multiple abiotic challenges due to climate change and evolving pathogen and pests pose a major concern for increasing wheat production globally. Triticeae species comprising of primary, secondary, and tertiary gene pools represent a rich source of genetic diversity in wheat. The conventional breeding strategies of direct hybridization, backcrossing and selection have successfully introgressed a number of desirable traits associated with grain yield, adaptation to abiotic stresses, disease resistance, and bio-fortification of wheat varieties. However, it is time consuming to incorporate genes conferring tolerance/resistance to multiple stresses in a single wheat variety by conventional approaches due to limitations in screening methods and the lower probabilities of combining desirable alleles. Efforts on developing innovative breeding strategies, novel tools and utilizing genetic diversity for new genes/alleles are essential to improve productivity, reduce vulnerability to diseases and pests and enhance nutritional quality. New technologies of high-throughput phenotyping, genome sequencing and genomic selection are promising approaches to maximize progeny screening and selection to accelerate the genetic gains in breeding more productive varieties. Use of cisgenic techniques to transfer beneficial alleles and their combinations within related species also offer great promise especially to achieve durable rust resistance. PMID:27458472

  6. Cassava Breeding I: The Value of Breeding Value

    PubMed Central

    Ceballos, Hernán; Pérez, Juan C.; Joaqui Barandica, Orlando; Lenis, Jorge I.; Morante, Nelson; Calle, Fernando; Pino, Lizbeth; Hershey, Clair H.

    2016-01-01

    Breeding cassava relies on several selection stages (single row trial-SRT; preliminary; advanced; and uniform yield trials—UYT). This study uses data from 14 years of evaluations. From more than 20,000 genotypes initially evaluated only 114 reached the last stage. The objective was to assess how the data at SRT could be used to predict the probabilities of genotypes reaching the UYT. Phenotypic data from each genotype at SRT was integrated into the selection index (SIN) used by the cassava breeding program. Average SIN from all the progenies derived from each progenitor was then obtained. Average SIN is an approximation of the breeding value of each progenitor. Data clearly suggested that some genotypes were better progenitors than others (e.g., high number of their progenies reaching the UYT), suggesting important variation in breeding values of progenitors. However, regression of average SIN of each parental genotype on the number of their respective progenies reaching UYT resulted in a negligible coefficient of determination (r2 = 0.05). Breeding value (e.g., average SIN) at SRT was not efficient predicting which genotypes were more likely to reach the UYT stage. Number of families and progenies derived from a given progenitor were more efficient predicting the probabilities of the progeny from a given parent reaching the UYT stage. Large within-family genetic variation tends to mask the true breeding value of each progenitor. The use of partially inbred progenitors (e.g., S1 or S2 genotypes) would reduce the within-family genetic variation thus making the assessment of breeding value more accurate. Moreover, partial inbreeding of progenitors can improve the breeding value of the original (S0) parental material and sharply accelerate genetic gains. For instance, homozygous S1 genotypes for the dominant resistance to cassava mosaic disease (CMD) could be generated and selected. All gametes from these selected S1 genotypes would carry the desirable allele and

  7. Optimists' Creed: Brave New Cyberlearning, Evolving Utopias (Circa 2041)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burleson, Winslow; Lewis, Armanda

    2016-01-01

    This essay imagines the role that artificial intelligence innovations play in the integrated living, learning and research environments of 2041. Here, in 2041, in the context of increasingly complex wicked challenges, whose solutions by their very nature continue to evade even the most capable experts, society and technology have co-evolved to…

  8. New nuclear build and evolving radiation protection challenges.

    PubMed

    Lazo, Edward

    2011-01-01

    Radiological protection has continued to evolve in order to meet emerging challenges and will continue to do so. This paper will discuss the scientific and social challenges that will or may be faced by the radiological protection community in the coming 10 to 20 y and how these may affect what is expected to be a renewed interest in building and operating nuclear power plants for electricity generation.

  9. Evolving resistance among Gram-positive pathogens.

    PubMed

    Munita, Jose M; Bayer, Arnold S; Arias, Cesar A

    2015-09-15

    Antimicrobial therapy is a key component of modern medical practice and a cornerstone for the development of complex clinical interventions in critically ill patients. Unfortunately, the increasing problem of antimicrobial resistance is now recognized as a major public health threat jeopardizing the care of thousands of patients worldwide. Gram-positive pathogens exhibit an immense genetic repertoire to adapt and develop resistance to virtually all antimicrobials clinically available. As more molecules become available to treat resistant gram-positive infections, resistance emerges as an evolutionary response. Thus, antimicrobial resistance has to be envisaged as an evolving phenomenon that demands constant surveillance and continuous efforts to identify emerging mechanisms of resistance to optimize the use of antibiotics and create strategies to circumvent this problem. Here, we will provide a broad perspective on the clinical aspects of antibiotic resistance in relevant gram-positive pathogens with emphasis on the mechanistic strategies used by these organisms to avoid being killed by commonly used antimicrobial agents.

  10. Life cycle planning: An evolving concept

    SciTech Connect

    Moore, P.J.R.; Gorman, I.G.

    1994-12-31

    Life-cycle planning is an evolving concept in the management of oil and gas projects. BHP Petroleum now interprets this idea to include all development planning from discovery and field appraisal to final abandonment and includes safety, environmental, technical, plant, regulatory, and staffing issues. This article describes in the context of the Timor Sea, how despite initial successes and continuing facilities upgrades, BHPP came to perceive that current operations could be the victim of early development successes, particularly in the areas of corrosion and maintenance. The search for analogies elsewhere lead to the UK North Sea, including the experiences of Britoil and BP, both of which performed detailed Life of Field studies in the later eighties. These materials have been used to construct a format and content for total Life-cycle plans in general and the social changes required to ensure their successful application in Timor Sea operations and deployment throughout Australia.

  11. Emperor penguins breeding on iceshelves.

    PubMed

    Fretwell, Peter T; Trathan, Phil N; Wienecke, Barbara; Kooyman, Gerald L

    2014-01-01

    We describe a new breeding behaviour discovered in emperor penguins; utilizing satellite and aerial-survey observations four emperor penguin breeding colonies have been recorded as existing on ice-shelves. Emperors have previously been considered as a sea-ice obligate species, with 44 of the 46 colonies located on sea-ice (the other two small colonies are on land). Of the colonies found on ice-shelves, two are newly discovered, and these have been recorded on shelves every season that they have been observed, the other two have been recorded both on ice-shelves and sea-ice in different breeding seasons. We conduct two analyses; the first using synthetic aperture radar data to assess why the largest of the four colonies, for which we have most data, locates sometimes on the shelf and sometimes on the sea-ice, and find that in years where the sea-ice forms late, the colony relocates onto the ice-shelf. The second analysis uses a number of environmental variables to test the habitat marginality of all emperor penguin breeding sites. We find that three of the four colonies reported in this study are in the most northerly, warmest conditions where sea-ice is often sub-optimal. The emperor penguin's reliance on sea-ice as a breeding platform coupled with recent concerns over changed sea-ice patterns consequent on regional warming, has led to their designation as "near threatened" in the IUCN red list. Current climate models predict that future loss of sea-ice around the Antarctic coastline will negatively impact emperor numbers; recent estimates suggest a halving of the population by 2052. The discovery of this new breeding behaviour at marginal sites could mitigate some of the consequences of sea-ice loss; potential benefits and whether these are permanent or temporary need to be considered and understood before further attempts are made to predict the population trajectory of this iconic species.

  12. Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-12-15

    potential NSS mission processing timelines. SpaceX is now eligible for an award of specified NSS missions to include the GPS III-2 launch service... SpaceX has also evolved their Falcon 9v1.1 configuration into the Falcon 9 Upgrade. To update the certification baseline, SpaceX and AF built Joint Work...9 v1.1 commercial launch experienced an in-flight mishap resulting in loss of vehicle on June 28, 2015. An official investigation was led by a SpaceX

  13. The 'E' factor -- evolving endodontics.

    PubMed

    Hunter, M J

    2013-03-01

    Endodontics is a constantly developing field, with new instruments, preparation techniques and sealants competing with trusted and traditional approaches to tooth restoration. Thus general dental practitioners must question and understand the significance of these developments before adopting new practices. In view of this, the aim of this article, and the associated presentation at the 2013 British Dental Conference & Exhibition, is to provide an overview of endodontic methods and constantly evolving best practice. The presentation will review current preparation techniques, comparing rotary versus reciprocation, and question current trends in restoration of the endodontically treated tooth.

  14. Regolith Evolved Gas Analyzer (REGA)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allen, Carlton C.; McKay, David S.

    1997-01-01

    The instrument consists of five subsystems: (1) a programmable furnace which can be loaded with samples of regolith, (2) a mass spectrometer which detects and measures atmospheric gases or gases evolved during heating, (3) a tank of pressurized gas which can be introduced to the regolith material while detecting and measuring volatile reaction products, (4) a mechanism for dumping the regolith sample and repeating the experiment on a fresh sample, and (5) a data system which controls and monitors the furnace, gas system, and mass spectrometer.

  15. Breeding monkeys for biomedical research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bourne, G. H.; Golarzdebourne, M. N.; Keeling, M. E.

    1973-01-01

    Captive bred rhesus monkeys show much less pathology than wild born animals. The monkeys may be bred in cages or in an outdoor compound. Cage bred animals are not psychologically normal which makes then unsuited for some types of space related research. Compound breeding provides contact between mother and infant and an opportunity for the infants to play with their peers which are important requirements to help maintain their behavioral integrity. Offspring harvested after a year in the compound appear behaviorally normal and show little histopathology. Compound breeding is also an economical method for the rapid production of young animals. The colony can double its size about every two and a half years.

  16. Breed base representation in dairy animals of 5 breeds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Inheritance of DNA from different dairy breeds can be determined by genotyping, just as individual ancestors such as parents, grandparents, or even great grandparents can be identified correctly in a high percentage of the cases by genotyping even if not reported or reported incorrectly in pedigrees...

  17. Evolving Robust Gene Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Noman, Nasimul; Monjo, Taku; Moscato, Pablo; Iba, Hitoshi

    2015-01-01

    Design and implementation of robust network modules is essential for construction of complex biological systems through hierarchical assembly of ‘parts’ and ‘devices’. The robustness of gene regulatory networks (GRNs) is ascribed chiefly to the underlying topology. The automatic designing capability of GRN topology that can exhibit robust behavior can dramatically change the current practice in synthetic biology. A recent study shows that Darwinian evolution can gradually develop higher topological robustness. Subsequently, this work presents an evolutionary algorithm that simulates natural evolution in silico, for identifying network topologies that are robust to perturbations. We present a Monte Carlo based method for quantifying topological robustness and designed a fitness approximation approach for efficient calculation of topological robustness which is computationally very intensive. The proposed framework was verified using two classic GRN behaviors: oscillation and bistability, although the framework is generalized for evolving other types of responses. The algorithm identified robust GRN architectures which were verified using different analysis and comparison. Analysis of the results also shed light on the relationship among robustness, cooperativity and complexity. This study also shows that nature has already evolved very robust architectures for its crucial systems; hence simulation of this natural process can be very valuable for designing robust biological systems. PMID:25616055

  18. Transport on randomly evolving trees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pál, L.

    2005-11-01

    The time process of transport on randomly evolving trees is investigated. By introducing the notions of living and dead nodes, a model of random tree evolution is constructed which describes the spreading in time of objects corresponding to nodes. It is assumed that at t=0 the tree consists of a single living node (root), from which the evolution may begin. At a certain time instant τ⩾0 , the root produces ν⩾0 living nodes connected by lines to the root which becomes dead at the moment of the offspring production. In the evolution process each of the new living nodes evolves further like a root independently of the others. By using the methods of the age-dependent branching processes we derive the joint distribution function of the numbers of living and dead nodes, and determine the correlation between these node numbers as a function of time. It is proved that the correlation function converges to 3/2 independently of the distributions of ν and τ when q1→1 and t→∞ . Also analyzed are the stochastic properties of the end nodes; and the correlation between the numbers of living and dead end nodes is shown to change its character suddenly at the very beginning of the evolution process. The survival probability of random trees is investigated and expressions are derived for this probability.

  19. Transport on randomly evolving trees.

    PubMed

    Pál, L

    2005-11-01

    The time process of transport on randomly evolving trees is investigated. By introducing the notions of living and dead nodes, a model of random tree evolution is constructed which describes the spreading in time of objects corresponding to nodes. It is assumed that at t=0 the tree consists of a single living node (root), from which the evolution may begin. At a certain time instant tau> or =0, the root produces v> or =0 living nodes connected by lines to the root which becomes dead at the moment of the offspring production. In the evolution process each of the new living nodes evolves further like a root independently of the others. By using the methods of the age-dependent branching processes we derive the joint distribution function of the numbers of living and dead nodes, and determine the correlation between these node numbers as a function of time. It is proved that the correlation function converges to square root of 3/2 independently of the distributions of v and tau when q1-->1 and t-->infinity. Also analyzed are the stochastic properties of the end nodes; and the correlation between the numbers of living and dead end nodes is shown to change its character suddenly at the very beginning of the evolution process. The survival probability of random trees is investigated and expressions are derived for this probability.

  20. Genetic diversity and genomic signatures of selection among cattle breeds from Siberia, eastern and northern Europe.

    PubMed

    Iso-Touru, T; Tapio, M; Vilkki, J; Kiseleva, T; Ammosov, I; Ivanova, Z; Popov, R; Ozerov, M; Kantanen, J

    2016-12-01

    Domestication in the near eastern region had a major impact on the gene pool of humpless taurine cattle (Bos taurus). As a result of subsequent natural and artificial selection, hundreds of different breeds have evolved, displaying a broad range of phenotypic traits. Here, 10 Eurasian B. taurus breeds from different biogeographic and production conditions, which exhibit different demographic histories and have been under artificial selection at various intensities, were investigated using the Illumina BovineSNP50 panel to understand their genetic diversity and population structure. In addition, we scanned genomes from eight breeds for signatures of diversifying selection. Our population structure analysis indicated six distinct breed groups, the most divergent being the Yakutian cattle from Siberia. Selection signals were shared (experimental P-value < 0.01) with more than four breeds on chromosomes 6, 7, 13, 16 and 22. The strongest selection signals in the Yakutian cattle were found on chromosomes 7 and 21, where a miRNA gene and genes related to immune system processes are respectively located. In general, genomic regions indicating selection overlapped with known QTL associated with milk production (e.g. on chromosome 19), reproduction (e.g. on chromosome 24) and meat quality (e.g. on chromosome 7). The selection map created in this study shows that native cattle breeds and their genetic resources represent unique material for future breeding.

  1. Community-based alternative breeding plans for indigenous sheep breeds in four agro-ecological zones of Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Mirkena, T; Duguma, G; Willam, A; Wurzinger, M; Haile, A; Rischkowsky, B; Okeyo, A M; Tibbo, M; Solkner, J

    2012-06-01

    Based on the results of participatory approaches to define traits in the breeding objectives, four scenarios of ram selection and ram use were compared via deterministic modelling of breeding plans for community-based sheep breeding programmes in four diverse agro-ecological regions of Ethiopia. The regions (and production systems) were Afar (pastoral/agro-pastoral), Bonga and Horro (both mixed crop-livestock) and Menz (sheep-barley). The schemes or scenarios differed in terms of selection intensity and duration of ram use. The predicted genetic gains per year in yearling weight (kilograms) were comparable across the schemes but differed among the breeds and ranged from 0.399 to 0.440 in Afar, 0.813 to 0.894 in Bonga, 0.850 to 0.940 in Horro, and 0.616 to 0.699 in Menz. The genetic gains per year in number of lambs born per ewe bred ranged from 0.009 to 0.010 in both Bonga and Horro. The predicted genetic gain in the proportion of lambs weaned per ewe joined was nearly comparable in all breeds ranging from 0.008 to 0.011. The genetic gain per year in milk yield of Afar breed was in the order of 0.018 to 0.020 kg, while the genetic gain per generation for greasy fleece weight (kg) ranged from 0.016 to 0.024 in Menz. Generally, strong selection and shorter duration of ram use for breeding were the preferred options. The expected genetic gains are satisfactory but largely rely on accurate and continuous pedigree and performance recording.

  2. Mass Loss and Dust Injection rates from Evolved Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sargent, Benjamin A.

    2010-01-01

    The Spitzer Space Telescope is continuing to contribute greatly to our understanding of the mass return from evolved stars in the Magellanic Clouds (MCs). I first review a number of smaller early Spitzer studies of evolved stars in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) and Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC). These studies often built upon earlier such studies using data from prior missions, like the Midcourse Space Experiment. I discuss various Spitzer spectroscopic studies that have investigated the dust compositions of evolved stars in the lower metallicity environments of the MCs. Also, I review studies of the MCs' massive evolved stars, which have been given somewhat less attention than other populations. Excitingly, using Spitzer data, for the first time the mass-loss from the diverse evolved star MC populations is being quantified. With the advent of the Surveying the Agents of a Galaxy's Evolution (SAGE; PI: M. Meixner) Spitzer Legacy program, tens of thousands of stars in the LMC have been classified as evolved stars using SAGE Spitzer data. I briefly review how evolved stars are classified (e.g., by using color-magnitude and color-color diagrams) using data from the SAGE surveys. Finally, I discuss work on radiative transfer (RT) modeling of evolved stars, which follows earlier work estimating their mass-loss using colors or emission in excess of stellar photosphere emission. This RT work starts by seeking acceptable dust properties for RT models of both SAGE Spectral Energy Distributions (SEDs) and SAGE-Spectroscopy (Spitzer Legacy program; PI: F. Kemper) spectra of asymptotic giant branch (AGB) stars. Afterwards, large grids of RT models are constructed to determine mass-loss rates for AGB stars and red supergiants in the SAGE samples of the LMC and, eventually, the SMC.

  3. Nutrient reserve dynamics of breeding canvasbacks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Barzen, J.A.; Serie, J.R.

    1990-01-01

    We compared nutrients in reproductive and nonreproductive tissues of breeding Canvasbacks (Aythya valisineria) to assess the relative importance of endogenous reserves and exogenous foods. Fat reserves of females increased during rapid follicle growth and varied more widely in size during the early phase of this period. Females began laying with ca. 205 g of fat in reserve and lost 1.8 g of carcass fat for every 1 g of fat contained in their ovary and eggs. Females lost body mass (primarily fat) at a declining rate as incubation advanced. Protein reserves increased directly with dry oviduct mass during rapid follicle growth. This direct relationship was highly dependent upon data from 2 birds and likely biased by structural size. During laying, protein reserves did not vary with the combined mass of dry oviduct and dry egg protein. Between laying and incubation, mean protein reserves decreased by an amount equal to the protein found in 2.1 Canvasback eggs. Calcium reserves did not vary with the cumulative total of calcium deposited in eggs. Mean calcium reserve declined by the equivalent content of 1.2 eggs between laying and incubation. We believe that protein and calcium were stored in small amounts during laying, and that they were supplemented continually by exogenous sources. In contrast, fat was stored in large amounts and contributed significantly to egg production and body maintenance. Male Canvasbacks lost fat steadily--but not protein or calcium--as the breeding season progressed.

  4. The evolution of potato breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Potato cultivars in most regions of the world are tetraploid and clonally propagated. For over a century, the breeding strategy has been phenotypic recurrent selection. However, the polyploid nature of the crop prevents breeders from eliminating deleterious alleles and assembling positive alleles fo...

  5. Breeding and propagating oakleaf hydrangeas

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    An oakleaf hydrangea breeding program at the U.S. National Arboretum’s worksite in McMinnville, Tenn. was started in 1996 for the purpose of developing attractive, compact oakleaf hydrangea cultivars suitable for use in small residential gardens. ‘Ruby Slippers’ and ‘Munchkin’ oakleaf hydrangeas we...

  6. Conservation priorities for Ethiopian sheep breeds combining threat status, breed merits and contributions to genetic diversity

    PubMed Central

    Gizaw, Solomon; Komen, Hans; Windig, Jack J; Hanotte, Olivier; van Arendonk, Johan AM

    2008-01-01

    Prioritizing livestock breeds for conservation needs to incorporate both genetic and non-genetic aspects important for the survival of the breeds. Here, we apply a maximum-utility-strategy to prioritize 14 traditional Ethiopian sheep breeds based on their threat status, contributions to farmer livelihoods (current breed merits) and contributions to genetic diversity. Contributions of the breeds to genetic diversity were quantified using Eding's marker-estimated kinship approaches. Non-genetic aspects included threats (e.g. low population size, low preferences by farmers) and current merits (economic, ecological and cultural merits). Threat analysis identified eight of the 14 breeds as threatened. Analysis of current merits showed that sub-alpine and arid-lowland breeds contribute most to farmer livelihoods in comparison to other breeds. The highest contribution to the genetic diversity conserved was from the Simien breed. Simien showed high between-breed (low between-breed kinship = 0.04) as well as high within-breed diversity (low within-breed kinship = 0.09 and high HE = 0.73 and allelic richness = 6.83). We combined the results on threat status, current breed merits and contributions to genetic diversity to produce a ranking of the 14 breeds for conservation purposes. Our results balance the trade-offs between conserving breeds as insurance against future uncertainties and current sustainable utilization. The ranking of breeds provides a basis for conservation strategies for Ethiopian sheep and contributes to a regional or global conservation plan. PMID:18558075

  7. Rapidly evolving homing CRISPR barcodes.

    PubMed

    Kalhor, Reza; Mali, Prashant; Church, George M

    2017-02-01

    We present an approach for engineering evolving DNA barcodes in living cells. A homing guide RNA (hgRNA) scaffold directs the Cas9-hgRNA complex to the DNA locus of the hgRNA itself. We show that this homing CRISPR-Cas9 system acts as an expressed genetic barcode that diversifies its sequence and that the rate of diversification can be controlled in cultured cells. We further evaluate these barcodes in cell populations and show that they can be used to record lineage history and that the barcode RNA can be amplified in situ, a prerequisite for in situ sequencing. This integrated approach will have wide-ranging applications, such as in deep lineage tracing, cellular barcoding, molecular recording, dissecting cancer biology, and connectome mapping.

  8. The evolving Gleason grading system.

    PubMed

    Chen, Ni; Zhou, Qiao

    2016-02-01

    The Gleason grading system for prostate adenocarcinoma has evolved from its original scheme established in the 1960s-1970s, to a significantly modified system after two major consensus meetings conducted by the International Society of Urologic Pathology (ISUP) in 2005 and 2014, respectively. The Gleason grading system has been incorporated into the WHO classification of prostate cancer, the AJCC/UICC staging system, and the NCCN guidelines as one of the key factors in treatment decision. Both pathologists and clinicians need to fully understand the principles and practice of this grading system. We here briefly review the historical aspects of the original scheme and the recent developments of Gleason grading system, focusing on major changes over the years that resulted in the modern Gleason grading system, which has led to a new "Grade Group" system proposed by the 2014 ISUP consensus, and adopted by the 2016 WHO classification of tumours of the prostate.

  9. [The evolving of cardiac interventions].

    PubMed

    Billinger, Michael

    2014-12-01

    Treatment modalities for heart diseases have considerable evolved during the last 20 years. Coronary and valvular heart disease are treated increasingly by less invasive percutaneous catheter based procedures instead of open-heart surgery. In addition, new cutting-edge interventions allow to cure heart disease for which until recently only medical treatment options were available. Whilst many patients benefit from these innovative therapies, rapidly developing technologies potentially carry the risk of overtreatment. In order to select patients for the most appropriate treatment, an intensive interdisciplinary teamwork between cardiologists and cardiac surgeons is a mandatory requirement. Additionally, knowledge transfer between cardiologists, their growing subspecialties and practitioners should be encouraged. Finally, timely scientific evaluation of new therapies and subsequent incorporation in guidelines remains crucial.

  10. Isotopic Analysis and Evolved Gases

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Swindle, Timothy D.; Boynton, William V.; Chutjian, Ara; Hoffman, John H.; Jordan, Jim L.; Kargel, Jeffrey S.; McEntire, Richard W.; Nyquist, Larry

    1996-01-01

    Precise measurements of the chemical, elemental, and isotopic composition of planetary surface material and gases, and observed variations in these compositions, can contribute significantly to our knowledge of the source(s), ages, and evolution of solar system materials. The analyses discussed in this paper are mostly made by mass spectrometers or some other type of mass analyzer, and address three broad areas of interest: (1) atmospheric composition - isotopic, elemental, and molecular, (2) gases evolved from solids, and (3) solids. Current isotopic data on nine elements, mostly from in situ analysis, but also from meteorites and telescopic observations are summarized. Potential instruments for isotopic analysis of lunar, Martian, Venusian, Mercury, and Pluto surfaces, along with asteroid, cometary and icy satellites, surfaces are discussed.

  11. Evolving networks by merging cliques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takemoto, Kazuhiro; Oosawa, Chikoo

    2005-10-01

    We propose a model for evolving networks by merging building blocks represented as complete graphs, reminiscent of modules in biological system or communities in sociology. The model shows power-law degree distributions, power-law clustering spectra, and high average clustering coefficients independent of network size. The analytical solutions indicate that a degree exponent is determined by the ratio of the number of merging nodes to that of all nodes in the blocks, demonstrating that the exponent is tunable, and are also applicable when the blocks are classical networks such as Erdös-Rényi or regular graphs. Our model becomes the same model as the Barabási-Albert model under a specific condition.

  12. Evolving phenotype of Marfan's syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Lipscomb, K.; Clayton-Smith, J.; Harris, R.

    1997-01-01

    Accepted 20 August 1996
 AIM—To examine evolution of the physical characteristics of Marfan's syndrome throughout childhood.
METHODS—40 children were ascertained during the development of a regional register for Marfan's syndrome. Evolution of the clinical characteristics was determined by repeat evaluation of 10 patients with sporadic Marfan's syndrome and 30 with a family history of the condition. DNA marker studies were used to facilitate diagnosis in those with the familial condition.
RESULTS—Musculoskeletal features predominated and evolved throughout childhood. Gene tracking enabled early diagnosis in children with familial Marfan's syndrome.
CONCLUSIONS—These observations may aid the clinical diagnosis of Marfan's syndrome in childhood, especially in those with the sporadic condition. Gene tracking has a role in the early diagnosis of familial Marfan's syndrome, allowing appropriate follow up and preventive care.

 PMID:9059160

  13. Simulations reveal the power and peril of artificial breeding sites for monitoring and managing animals.

    PubMed

    McClure, Christopher J W; Pauli, Benjamin P; Heath, Julie A

    2017-01-24

    Despite common use, the efficacy of artificial breeding sites (e.g., nest boxes, bat houses, artificial burrows) as tools for monitoring and managing animals depends on the demography of target populations and availability of natural sites. Yet, the conditions enabling artificial breeding sites to be useful or informative have yet to be articulated. We use a stochastic simulation model to determine situations where artificial breeding sites are either useful or disadvantageous for monitoring and managing animals. Artificial breeding sites are a convenient tool for monitoring animals and therefore occupancy of artificial breeding sites is often used as an index of population levels. However, systematic changes in availability of sites that are not monitored might induce trends in occupancy of monitored sites-a situation rarely considered by monitoring programs. We therefore examine how systematic changes in unmonitored sites could bias inference from trends in the occupancy of monitored sites. Our model also allows us to examine effects on population levels if artificial breeding sites either increase or decrease population vital rates (survival and fecundity). We demonstrate that trends in occupancy of monitored sites are misleading if the number of unmonitored sites changes over time. Further, breeding site fidelity can cause an initial lag in occupancy of newly installed sites that could be misinterpreted as an increasing population, even when the population has been continuously declining. Importantly, provisioning of artificial breeding sites only benefits populations if breeding sites are limiting or if artificial sites increase vital rates. There are many situations where installation of artificial breeding sites, and their use in monitoring, can have unintended consequences. Managers should therefore not assume that provision of artificial breeding sites will necessarily benefit populations. Further, trends in occupancy of artificial breeding sites should be

  14. Evolving Localizations in Reaction-Diffusion Cellular Automata

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adamatzky, Andrew; Bull, Larry; Collet, Pierre; Sapin, Emmanuel

    We consider hexagonal cellular automata with immediate cell neighbourhood and three cell-states. Every cell calculates its next state depending on the integral representation of states in its neighbourhood, i.e., how many neighbours are in each one state. We employ evolutionary algorithms to breed local transition functions that support mobile localizations (gliders), and characterize sets of the functions selected in terms of quasi-chemical systems. Analysis of the set of functions evolved allows to speculate that mobile localizations are likely to emerge in the quasi-chemical systems with limited diffusion of one reagent, a small number of molecules are required for amplification of travelling localizations, and reactions leading to stationary localizations involve relatively equal amount of quasi-chemical species. Techniques developed can be applied in cascading signals in nature-inspired spatially extended computing devices, and phenomenological studies and classification of non-linear discrete systems.

  15. METAPOPULATION STRUCTURE AND DYNAMICS OF POND BREEDING

    EPA Science Inventory

    Our review indicates that pond breeding amphibians exhibit highly variable spatial and temporal population dynamics, such that no single generalized model can realistically describe these animals. We propose that consideration of breeding pond permanence, and adaptations to pond ...

  16. Genetic Diversity of US Sheep Breeds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Understanding the genetic relationships between US sheep breeds is useful in developing conservation strategies and actions. A broad sampling of individual sheep from 28 breeds was performed. Breed types included: fine wool, meat types, long wool, hair, prolific, and fat tailed. Blood and semen samp...

  17. Can I compare EPD's across breeds?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Proper comparison of the genetic merit of animals across breeds can be difficult and confusion for beef cattle producers. With the advent of a new genetic evaluation system where several breeds are evaluated in the same genetic analysis, confusion on direct comparison of animals across breeds has i...

  18. Population structure of ice-breeding seals.

    PubMed

    Davis, Corey S; Stirling, Ian; Strobeck, Curtis; Coltman, David W

    2008-07-01

    The development of population genetic structure in ice-breeding seal species is likely to be shaped by a combination of breeding habitat and life-history characteristics. Species that return to breed on predictable fast-ice locations are more likely to exhibit natal fidelity than pack-ice-breeding species, which in turn facilitates the development of genetic differentiation between subpopulations. Other aspects of life history such as geographically distinct vocalizations, female gregariousness, and the potential for polygynous breeding may also facilitate population structure. Based on these factors, we predicted that fast-ice-breeding seal species (the Weddell and ringed seal) would show elevated genetic differentiation compared to pack-ice-breeding species (the leopard, Ross, crabeater and bearded seals). We tested this prediction using microsatellite analysis to examine population structure of these six ice-breeding species. Our results did not support this prediction. While none of the Antarctic pack-ice species showed statistically significant population structure, the bearded seal of the Arctic pack ice showed strong differentiation between subpopulations. Again in contrast, the fast-ice-breeding Weddell seal of the Antarctic showed clear evidence for genetic differentiation while the ringed seal, breeding in similar habitat in the Arctic, did not. These results suggest that the development of population structure in ice-breeding phocid seals is a more complex outcome of the interplay of phylogenetic and ecological factors than can be predicted on the basis of breeding substrate and life-history characteristics.

  19. Evolution of Conspecific Brood Parasitism versus Cooperative Breeding as Alternative Reproductive Tactics.

    PubMed

    Zink, Andrew G; Lyon, Bruce E

    2016-01-01

    Cooperative breeding and conspecific brood parasitism can both be favored by ecological saturation of breeding territories or nest sites. Here, we develop a model that links these alternative reproductive tactics by focusing on nonnesting females (S) that either breed cooperatively with a nesting female (N) or parasitize a third, outside host female (H). We find that cooperative breeding is more likely to evolve with increasing relatedness of cooperating females (S or N) to the outside host female (H) and with increasing costs to the hosts for receiving parasitic eggs. Conversely, cooperation is less likely with increasing kinship between the two potentially cooperative nesters (S and N). This is because even the nesting female gains higher inclusive fitness as long as the number of parasitic eggs (of her otherwise potentially cooperating partner) is sufficiently high. We find the relationship between kinship and reproductive skew within cooperative nests can be either positive or negative depending on the fecundity of parasites versus nesting females. We also find that either of the cooperatively nesting females is more likely to tolerate a smaller fraction of group reproduction as kinship with the host female increases and as the host reproduces more (relative to the parasite) in outside nests. Finally, our model predicts that, as the outside option of conspecific brood parasitism becomes more profitable, helping behavior (zero reproduction by one female) is less likely to evolve in cooperatively breeding groups.

  20. [The evaluation of breed-specific defects in dog breeds from an animal welfare viewpoint].

    PubMed

    Peyer, N; Steiger, A

    1998-01-01

    Issues of breed defects such as morphology, physiology or behaviour in pure-breed dogs, are briefly discussed. Suggestions for various kinds of improvements are made, particularly concerning legislation, analysis of pedigree to avoid undesirable breed characteristics and what breeding clubs, individual breeders, judges, future dog owners and veterinarians could and should do about these problems; these are followed by summary conclusions.

  1. A Quantitative Approach to Assessing System Evolvability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Christian, John A., III

    2004-01-01

    When selecting a system from multiple candidates, the customer seeks the one that best meets his or her needs. Recently the desire for evolvable systems has become more important and engineers are striving to develop systems that accommodate this need. In response to this search for evolvability, we present a historical perspective on evolvability, propose a refined definition of evolvability, and develop a quantitative method for measuring this property. We address this quantitative methodology from both a theoretical and practical perspective. This quantitative model is then applied to the problem of evolving a lunar mission to a Mars mission as a case study.

  2. Emperor Penguins Breeding on Iceshelves

    PubMed Central

    Fretwell, Peter T.; Trathan, Phil N.; Wienecke, Barbara; Kooyman, Gerald L.

    2014-01-01

    We describe a new breeding behaviour discovered in emperor penguins; utilizing satellite and aerial-survey observations four emperor penguin breeding colonies have been recorded as existing on ice-shelves. Emperors have previously been considered as a sea-ice obligate species, with 44 of the 46 colonies located on sea-ice (the other two small colonies are on land). Of the colonies found on ice-shelves, two are newly discovered, and these have been recorded on shelves every season that they have been observed, the other two have been recorded both on ice-shelves and sea-ice in different breeding seasons. We conduct two analyses; the first using synthetic aperture radar data to assess why the largest of the four colonies, for which we have most data, locates sometimes on the shelf and sometimes on the sea-ice, and find that in years where the sea-ice forms late, the colony relocates onto the ice-shelf. The second analysis uses a number of environmental variables to test the habitat marginality of all emperor penguin breeding sites. We find that three of the four colonies reported in this study are in the most northerly, warmest conditions where sea-ice is often sub-optimal. The emperor penguin’s reliance on sea-ice as a breeding platform coupled with recent concerns over changed sea-ice patterns consequent on regional warming, has led to their designation as “near threatened” in the IUCN red list. Current climate models predict that future loss of sea-ice around the Antarctic coastline will negatively impact emperor numbers; recent estimates suggest a halving of the population by 2052. The discovery of this new breeding behaviour at marginal sites could mitigate some of the consequences of sea-ice loss; potential benefits and whether these are permanent or temporary need to be considered and understood before further attempts are made to predict the population trajectory of this iconic species. PMID:24416381

  3. Beyond promiscuity: mate-choice commitments in social breeding

    PubMed Central

    Boomsma, Jacobus J.

    2013-01-01

    Obligate eusociality with distinct caste phenotypes has evolved from strictly monogamous sub-social ancestors in ants, some bees, some wasps and some termites. This implies that no lineage reached the most advanced form of social breeding, unless helpers at the nest gained indirect fitness values via siblings that were identical to direct fitness via offspring. The complete lack of re-mating promiscuity equalizes sex-specific variances in reproductive success. Later, evolutionary developments towards multiple queen-mating retained lifetime commitment between sexual partners, but reduced male variance in reproductive success relative to female's, similar to the most advanced vertebrate cooperative breeders. Here, I (i) discuss some of the unique and highly peculiar mating system adaptations of eusocial insects; (ii) address ambiguities that remained after earlier reviews and extend the monogamy logic to the evolution of soldier castes; (iii) evaluate the evidence for indirect fitness benefits driving the dynamics of (in)vertebrate cooperative breeding, while emphasizing the fundamental differences between obligate eusociality and cooperative breeding; (iv) infer that lifetime commitment is a major driver towards higher levels of organization in bodies, colonies and mutualisms. I argue that evolutionary informative definitions of social systems that separate direct and indirect fitness benefits facilitate transparency when testing inclusive fitness theory. PMID:23339241

  4. Microbiome Selection Could Spur Next-Generation Plant Breeding Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Gopal, Murali; Gupta, Alka

    2016-01-01

    “No plant is an island too…” Plants, though sessile, have developed a unique strategy to counter biotic and abiotic stresses by symbiotically co-evolving with microorganisms and tapping into their genome for this purpose. Soil is the bank of microbial diversity from which a plant selectively sources its microbiome to suit its needs. Besides soil, seeds, which carry the genetic blueprint of plants during trans-generational propagation, are home to diverse microbiota that acts as the principal source of microbial inoculum in crop cultivation. Overall, a plant is ensconced both on the outside and inside with a diverse assemblage of microbiota. Together, the plant genome and the genes of the microbiota that the plant harbors in different plant tissues, i.e., the ‘plant microbiome,’ form the holobiome which is now considered as unit of selection: ‘the holobiont.’ The ‘plant microbiome’ not only helps plants to remain fit but also offers critical genetic variability, hitherto, not employed in the breeding strategy by plant breeders, who traditionally have exploited the genetic variability of the host for developing high yielding or disease tolerant or drought resistant varieties. This fresh knowledge of the microbiome, particularly of the rhizosphere, offering genetic variability to plants, opens up new horizons for breeding that could usher in cultivation of next-generation crops depending less on inorganic inputs, resistant to insect pest and diseases and resilient to climatic perturbations. We surmise, from ever increasing evidences, that plants and their microbial symbionts need to be co-propagated as life-long partners in future strategies for plant breeding. In this perspective, we propose bottom–up approach to co-propagate the co-evolved, the plant along with the target microbiome, through – (i) reciprocal soil transplantation method, or (ii) artificial ecosystem selection method of synthetic microbiome inocula, or (iii) by exploration of

  5. Limitations of captive breeding in endangered species recovery

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Snyder, N.F.R.; Derrickson, S.R.; Beissenger, S.R.; Wiley, J.W.; Smith, T.B.; Toone, W.D.; Miller, B.

    1996-01-01

    The use of captive breeding in species recovery has grown enormously in recent years, but without a concurrent growth in appreciation of its limitations. Problems with (1) establishing self-sufficient captive populations, (2) poor success in reintroductions, (3.) high costs, (4) domestication, (5) preemption of other recovery techniques, (6) disease outbreaks, and (7) maintaining administrative continuity have all been significant. The technique has often been invoked prematurely and should not normally be employed before a careful field evaluation of costs and benefits of all conservation alternatives has been accomplished and a determination made that captive breeding is essential for species survival. Merely demonstrating that a species population is declining or bas fallen below what may be a minimum viable size does not constitute enough analysis to justify captive breeding as a recovery measure. Captive breeding should be reviewed as a last resort in species recovery and not a prophylactic or long-term solution because of the inexorable genetic and phenotypic changes that occur in captive environments. Captive breeding can play a crucial role in recovery of some species for witch effective alternatives are unavailable in the short term. However, it should not displace habitat and ecosystem protection nor should it be invoked in the absence of comprehensive efforts to maintain or restore populations in wild habitats. Zoological institutions with captive breeding programs should operate under carefully defined conditions of disease prevention and genetic/behavioral management. More important, these institutions should help preserve biodiversity through their capacities for public education, professional training, research, and support of in situ conservation efforts.

  6. Attack resilience of the evolving scientific collaboration network.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xiao Fan; Xu, Xiao-Ke; Small, Michael; Tse, Chi K

    2011-01-01

    Stationary complex networks have been extensively studied in the last ten years. However, many natural systems are known to be continuously evolving at the local ("microscopic") level. Understanding the response to targeted attacks of an evolving network may shed light on both how to design robust systems and finding effective attack strategies. In this paper we study empirically the response to targeted attacks of the scientific collaboration networks. First we show that scientific collaboration network is a complex system which evolves intensively at the local level--fewer than 20% of scientific collaborations last more than one year. Then, we investigate the impact of the sudden death of eminent scientists on the evolution of the collaboration networks of their former collaborators. We observe in particular that the sudden death, which is equivalent to the removal of the center of the egocentric network of the eminent scientist, does not affect the topological evolution of the residual network. Nonetheless, removal of the eminent hub node is exactly the strategy one would adopt for an effective targeted attack on a stationary network. Hence, we use this evolving collaboration network as an experimental model for attack on an evolving complex network. We find that such attacks are ineffectual, and infer that the scientific collaboration network is the trace of knowledge propagation on a larger underlying social network. The redundancy of the underlying structure in fact acts as a protection mechanism against such network attacks.

  7. A slowly evolving host moves first in symbiotic interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Damore, James; Gore, Jeff

    2011-03-01

    Symbiotic relationships, both parasitic and mutualistic, are ubiquitous in nature. Understanding how these symbioses evolve, from bacteria and their phages to humans and our gut microflora, is crucial in understanding how life operates. Often, symbioses consist of a slowly evolving host species with each host only interacting with its own sub-population of symbionts. The Red Queen hypothesis describes coevolutionary relationships as constant arms races with each species rushing to evolve an advantage over the other, suggesting that faster evolution is favored. Here, we use a simple game theoretic model of host- symbiont coevolution that includes population structure to show that if the symbionts evolve much faster than the host, the equilibrium distribution is the same as it would be if it were a sequential game where the host moves first against its symbionts. For the slowly evolving host, this will prove to be advantageous in mutualisms and a handicap in antagonisms. The model allows for symbiont adaptation to its host, a result that is robust to changes in the parameters and generalizes to continuous and multiplayer games. Our findings provide insight into a wide range of symbiotic phenomena and help to unify the field of coevolutionary theory.

  8. Increased longevity evolves from grandmothering.

    PubMed

    Kim, Peter S; Coxworth, James E; Hawkes, Kristen

    2012-12-22

    Postmenopausal longevity may have evolved in our lineage when ancestral grandmothers subsidized their daughters' fertility by provisioning grandchildren, but the verbal hypothesis has lacked mathematical support until now. Here, we present a formal simulation in which life spans similar to those of modern chimpanzees lengthen into the modern human range as a consequence of grandmother effects. Greater longevity raises the chance of living through the fertile years but is opposed by costs that differ for the sexes. Our grandmother assumptions are restrictive. Only females who are no longer fertile themselves are eligible, and female fertility extends to age 45 years. Initially, there are very few eligible grandmothers and effects are small. Grandmothers can support only one dependent at a time and do not care selectively for their daughters' offspring. They must take the oldest juveniles still relying on mothers; and infants under the age of 2 years are never eligible for subsidy. Our model includes no assumptions about brains, learning or pair bonds. Grandmother effects alone are sufficient to propel the doubling of life spans in less than sixty thousand years.

  9. Increased longevity evolves from grandmothering

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Peter S.; Coxworth, James E.; Hawkes, Kristen

    2012-01-01

    Postmenopausal longevity may have evolved in our lineage when ancestral grandmothers subsidized their daughters' fertility by provisioning grandchildren, but the verbal hypothesis has lacked mathematical support until now. Here, we present a formal simulation in which life spans similar to those of modern chimpanzees lengthen into the modern human range as a consequence of grandmother effects. Greater longevity raises the chance of living through the fertile years but is opposed by costs that differ for the sexes. Our grandmother assumptions are restrictive. Only females who are no longer fertile themselves are eligible, and female fertility extends to age 45 years. Initially, there are very few eligible grandmothers and effects are small. Grandmothers can support only one dependent at a time and do not care selectively for their daughters' offspring. They must take the oldest juveniles still relying on mothers; and infants under the age of 2 years are never eligible for subsidy. Our model includes no assumptions about brains, learning or pair bonds. Grandmother effects alone are sufficient to propel the doubling of life spans in less than sixty thousand years. PMID:23097518

  10. Multicopy Suppression Underpins Metabolic Evolvability

    PubMed Central

    Patrick, Wayne M.; Quandt, Erik M.; Swartzlander, Dan B.; Matsumura, Ichiro

    2009-01-01

    Our understanding of the origins of new metabolic functions is based upon anecdotal genetic and biochemical evidence. Some auxotrophies can be suppressed by overexpressing substrate-ambiguous enzymes (i.e., those that catalyze the same chemical transformation on different substrates). Other enzymes exhibit weak but detectable catalytic promiscuity in vitro (i.e., they catalyze different transformations on similar substrates). Cells adapt to novel environments through the evolution of these secondary activities, but neither their chemical natures nor their frequencies of occurrence have been characterized en bloc. Here, we systematically identified multifunctional genes within the Escherichia coli genome. We screened 104 single-gene knockout strains and discovered that many (20%) of these auxotrophs were rescued by the overexpression of at least one noncognate E. coli gene. The deleted gene and its suppressor were generally unrelated, suggesting that promiscuity is a product of contingency. This genome-wide survey demonstrates that multifunctional genes are common and illustrates the mechanistic diversity by which their products enhance metabolic robustness and evolvability. PMID:17884825

  11. How do drumlin patterns evolve?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ely, Jeremy; Clark, Chris; Spagnolo, Matteo; Hughes, Anna

    2016-04-01

    The flow of a geomorphic agent over a sediment bed creates patterns in the substrate composed of bedforms. Ice is no exception to this, organising soft sedimentary substrates into subglacial bedforms. As we are yet to fully observe their initiation and evolution beneath a contemporary ice mass, little is known about how patterns in subglacial bedforms develop. Here we study 36,222 drumlins, divided into 72 flowsets, left behind by the former British-Irish Ice sheet. These flowsets provide us with 'snapshots' of drumlin pattern development. The probability distribution functions of the size and shape metrics of drumlins within these flowsets were analysed to determine whether behaviour that is common of other patterned phenomena has occurred. Specifically, we ask whether drumlins i) are printed at a specific scale; ii) grow or shrink after they initiate; iii) stabilise at a specific size and shape; and iv) migrate. Our results indicate that drumlins initiate at a minimum size and spacing. After initiation, the log-normal distribution of drumlin size and shape metrics suggests that drumlins grow, or possibly shrink, as they develop. We find no evidence for stabilisation in drumlin length, supporting the idea of a subglacial bedform continuum. Drumlin migration is difficult to determine from the palaeo-record. However, there are some indications that a mixture of static and mobile drumlins occurs, which could potentially lead to collisions, cannibalisation and coarsening. Further images of modern drumlin fields evolving beneath ice are required to capture stages of drumlin pattern evolution.

  12. Magnetic fields around evolved stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leal-Ferreira, M.; Vlemmings, W.; Kemball, A.; Amiri, N.; Maercker, M.; Ramstedt, S.; Olofsson, G.

    2014-04-01

    A number of mechanisms, such as magnetic fields, (binary) companions and circumstellar disks have been suggested to be the cause of non-spherical PNe and in particular collimated outflows. This work investigates one of these mechanisms: the magnetic fields. While MHD simulations show that the fields can indeed be important, few observations of magnetic fields have been done so far. We used the VLBA to observe five evolved stars, with the goal of detecting the magnetic field by means of water maser polarization. The sample consists in four AGB stars (IK Tau, RT Vir, IRC+60370 and AP Lyn) and one pPN (OH231.8+4.2). In four of the five sources, several strong maser features were detected allowing us to measure the linear and/or circular polarization. Based on the circular polarization detections, we infer the strength of the component of the field along the line of sight to be between ~30 mG and ~330 mG in the water maser regions of these four sources. When extrapolated to the surface of the stars, the magnetic field strength would be between a few hundred mG and a few Gauss when assuming a toroidal field geometry and higher when assuming more complex magnetic fields. We conclude that the magnetic energy we derived in the water maser regions is higher than the thermal and kinetic energy, leading to the conclusion that, indeed, magnetic fields probably play an important role in shaping Planetary Nebulae.

  13. Circumstellar Crystalline Silicates: Evolved Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tartar, Josh; Speck, A. K.

    2008-05-01

    One of the most exciting developments in astronomy in the last 15 years was the discovery of crystalline silicate stardust by the Short Wavelength Spectrometer (SWS) on board of ISO; discovery of the crystalline grains was indeed one of the biggest surprises of the ISO mission. Initially discovered around AGB stars (evolved stars in the range of 0.8 > M/M¤>8) at far-infrared (IR) wavelengths, crystalline silicates have since been seen in many astrophysical environments including young stellar objects (T Tauri and Herbig Ae/Be), comets and Ultra Luminous Infrared Galaxies. Low and intermediate mass stars (LIMS) comprise 95% of the contributors to the ISM, so study of the formation of crystalline silicates is critical to our understanding of the ISM, which is thought to be primarily amorphous (one would expect an almost exact match between the composition of AGB dust shells and the dust in the ISM). Whether the crystalline dust is merely undetectable or amorphized remains a mystery. The FORCAST instrument on SOFIA as well as the PACS instrument on Herschel will provide exciting observing opportunities for the further study of crystalline silicates.

  14. Multiscale modelling of evolving foams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saye, R. I.; Sethian, J. A.

    2016-06-01

    We present a set of multi-scale interlinked algorithms to model the dynamics of evolving foams. These algorithms couple the key effects of macroscopic bubble rearrangement, thin film drainage, and membrane rupture. For each of the mechanisms, we construct consistent and accurate algorithms, and couple them together to work across the wide range of space and time scales that occur in foam dynamics. These algorithms include second order finite difference projection methods for computing incompressible fluid flow on the macroscale, second order finite element methods to solve thin film drainage equations in the lamellae and Plateau borders, multiphase Voronoi Implicit Interface Methods to track interconnected membrane boundaries and capture topological changes, and Lagrangian particle methods for conservative liquid redistribution during rearrangement and rupture. We derive a full set of numerical approximations that are coupled via interface jump conditions and flux boundary conditions, and show convergence for the individual mechanisms. We demonstrate our approach by computing a variety of foam dynamics, including coupled evolution of three-dimensional bubble clusters attached to an anchored membrane and collapse of a foam cluster.

  15. Migratory double breeding in Neotropical migrant birds.

    PubMed

    Rohwer, Sievert; Hobson, Keith A; Rohwer, Vanya G

    2009-11-10

    Neotropical migratory songbirds typically breed in temperate regions and then travel long distances to spend the majority of the annual cycle in tropical wintering areas. Using stable-isotope methodology, we provide quantitative evidence of dual breeding ranges for 5 species of Neotropical migrants. Each is well known to have a Neotropical winter range and a breeding range in the United States and Canada. However, after their first bout of breeding in the north, many individuals migrate hundreds to thousands of kilometers south in midsummer to breed a second time during the same summer in coastal west Mexico or Baja California Sur. They then migrate further south to their final wintering areas in the Neotropics. Our discovery of dual breeding ranges in Neotropical migrants reveals a hitherto unrealized flexibility in life-history strategies for these species and underscores that demographic models and conservation plans must consider dual breeding for these migrants.

  16. Migratory double breeding in Neotropical migrant birds

    PubMed Central

    Rohwer, Sievert; Hobson, Keith A.; Rohwer, Vanya G.

    2009-01-01

    Neotropical migratory songbirds typically breed in temperate regions and then travel long distances to spend the majority of the annual cycle in tropical wintering areas. Using stable-isotope methodology, we provide quantitative evidence of dual breeding ranges for 5 species of Neotropical migrants. Each is well known to have a Neotropical winter range and a breeding range in the United States and Canada. However, after their first bout of breeding in the north, many individuals migrate hundreds to thousands of kilometers south in midsummer to breed a second time during the same summer in coastal west Mexico or Baja California Sur. They then migrate further south to their final wintering areas in the Neotropics. Our discovery of dual breeding ranges in Neotropical migrants reveals a hitherto unrealized flexibility in life-history strategies for these species and underscores that demographic models and conservation plans must consider dual breeding for these migrants. PMID:19858484

  17. Submillimeter observations of evolved stars

    SciTech Connect

    Sopka, R.J.; Hildebrand, R.; Jaffe, D.T.; Gatley, I.; Roellig, T.; Werner, M.; Jura, M.; Zuckerman, B.

    1985-07-01

    Broad-band submillimeter observations of the thermal emission from evolved stars have been obtained with the United Kingdom Infrared Telescope on Mauna Kea, Hawaii. These observations, at an effective wavelength of 400 ..mu..m, provide the most direct method for estimating the mass loss rate in dust from these stars and also help to define the long-wavelength thermal spectrum of the dust envelopes. The mass loss rates in dust that we derive range from 10/sup -9/ to 10/sup -6/ M/sub sun/ yr/sup -1/ and are compared with mass loss rates derived from molecular line observations to estimate gas-to-dust ratios in outflowing envelopes. These values are found to be generally compatible with the interstellar gas-to-dust ratio of approx.100 if submillimeter emissivities appropriate to amorphous grain structures are assumed. Our analysis of the spectrum of IRC+10216 confirms previous suggestions that the grain emissivity varies as lambda/sup -1.2/ rather than as lambda/sup -2/ for 10

  18. Breeding without breeding: is a complete pedigree necessary for efficient breeding?

    PubMed

    El-Kassaby, Yousry A; Cappa, Eduardo P; Liewlaksaneeyanawin, Cherdsak; Klápště, Jaroslav; Lstibůrek, Milan

    2011-01-01

    Complete pedigree information is a prerequisite for modern breeding and the ranking of parents and offspring for selection and deployment decisions. DNA fingerprinting and pedigree reconstruction can substitute for artificial matings, by allowing parentage delineation of naturally produced offspring. Here, we report on the efficacy of a breeding concept called "Breeding without Breeding" (BwB) that circumvents artificial matings, focusing instead on a subset of randomly sampled, maternally known but paternally unknown offspring to delineate their paternal parentage. We then generate the information needed to rank those offspring and their paternal parents, using a combination of complete (full-sib: FS) and incomplete (half-sib: HS) analyses of the constructed pedigrees. Using a random sample of wind-pollinated offspring from 15 females (seed donors), growing in a 41-parent western larch population, BwB is evaluated and compared to two commonly used testing methods that rely on either incomplete (maternal half-sib, open-pollinated: OP) or complete (FS) pedigree designs. BwB produced results superior to those from the incomplete design and virtually identical to those from the complete pedigree methods. The combined use of complete and incomplete pedigree information permitted evaluating all parents, both maternal and paternal, as well as all offspring, a result that could not have been accomplished with either the OP or FS methods alone. We also discuss the optimum experimental setting, in terms of the proportion of fingerprinted offspring, the size of the assembled maternal and paternal half-sib families, the role of external gene flow, and selfing, as well as the number of parents that could be realistically tested with BwB.

  19. Traditional and modern plant breeding methods with examples in rice (Oryza sativa L.).

    PubMed

    Breseghello, Flavio; Coelho, Alexandre Siqueira Guedes

    2013-09-04

    Plant breeding can be broadly defined as alterations caused in plants as a result of their use by humans, ranging from unintentional changes resulting from the advent of agriculture to the application of molecular tools for precision breeding. The vast diversity of breeding methods can be simplified into three categories: (i) plant breeding based on observed variation by selection of plants based on natural variants appearing in nature or within traditional varieties; (ii) plant breeding based on controlled mating by selection of plants presenting recombination of desirable genes from different parents; and (iii) plant breeding based on monitored recombination by selection of specific genes or marker profiles, using molecular tools for tracking within-genome variation. The continuous application of traditional breeding methods in a given species could lead to the narrowing of the gene pool from which cultivars are drawn, rendering crops vulnerable to biotic and abiotic stresses and hampering future progress. Several methods have been devised for introducing exotic variation into elite germplasm without undesirable effects. Cases in rice are given to illustrate the potential and limitations of different breeding approaches.

  20. Evolving fuzzy rules in a learning classifier system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Valenzuela-Rendon, Manuel

    1993-01-01

    The fuzzy classifier system (FCS) combines the ideas of fuzzy logic controllers (FLC's) and learning classifier systems (LCS's). It brings together the expressive powers of fuzzy logic as it has been applied in fuzzy controllers to express relations between continuous variables, and the ability of LCS's to evolve co-adapted sets of rules. The goal of the FCS is to develop a rule-based system capable of learning in a reinforcement regime, and that can potentially be used for process control.

  1. The Evolving Nature of Hepatic Abscess: A Review

    PubMed Central

    Mavilia, Marianna G.; Molina, Marco; Wu, George Y.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Hepatic abscess (HA) remains a serious and often difficult to diagnose problem. HAs can be divided into three main categories based on the underlying conditions: infectious, malignant, and iatrogenic. Infectious abscesses include those secondary to direct extension from local infection, systemic bacteremia, and intra-abdominal infections that seed the portal system. However, over the years, the etiologies and risks factors for HA have continued to evolve. Prompt recognition is important for instituting effective management and obtaining good outcomes. PMID:27350946

  2. Evolving evolutionary algorithms using linear genetic programming.

    PubMed

    Oltean, Mihai

    2005-01-01

    A new model for evolving Evolutionary Algorithms is proposed in this paper. The model is based on the Linear Genetic Programming (LGP) technique. Every LGP chromosome encodes an EA which is used for solving a particular problem. Several Evolutionary Algorithms for function optimization, the Traveling Salesman Problem and the Quadratic Assignment Problem are evolved by using the considered model. Numerical experiments show that the evolved Evolutionary Algorithms perform similarly and sometimes even better than standard approaches for several well-known benchmarking problems.

  3. Acquiring Evolving Technologies: Web Services Standards

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-06-30

    2006 Carnegie Mellon University Acquiring Evolving Technologies : Web Services Standards Harry L. Levinson Software Engineering Institute Carnegie...Acquiring Evolving Technologies : Web Services Standards 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) 5d. PROJECT...298 (Rev. 8-98) Prescribed by ANSI Std Z39-18 2 Acquiring Evolving Technologies : Web Services Standards © 2006 Carnegie Mellon University Acquiring

  4. Cassini Radar at Titan : Evolving Studies of an Evolving World

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lorenz, Ralph D.

    2013-04-01

    The Cassini RADAR investigation continues to explore Titan : here I summarize some recent and ongoing developments. Geological interpretation of SAR imaging engages a wide community, in particular addressing Titan's dunes, lakes, seas and fluvial systems, impact craters and possible cryovolcanic features. Mapping of these features continues to suggest a dynamic world, with geologically-recent surface change due to tectonic, hydrological and aeolian processes. Mapping of fluvial channels and shoreline features suggests some tectonic controls and spatially-variable land/sea level changes. A despeckle filter applied to the images has proven popular for image interpretation, for example in resolving what may be star- and barchanoid dune morphologies which contrast with the dominant linear type. New observations in 2012 (T83, T84 and T86) place bounds on liquid accumulation in the northern polar regions - not expected to be substantial for another couple of years - and have highlighted a possibly cryomagma-inflated 'hot cross bun' feature and anomalous midlatitude ridges that may be paleodunes from a different climate epoch. The accumulating body of topographic data from altimetry and SARtopo has permitted the assembly of a global topographic map (albeit substantially interpolated) and an estimate of the spherical harmonic shape out to degree ~12. These datasets will be of substantial value in interpreting Titan's structure and geology, and as a boundary condition on global circulation models and fluvial studies. The growing number of overlap regions also permits stereo topography on smaller scales (e.g. of impact structures Ksa and Soi) which helps to understand the processes obliterating craters on Titan.

  5. Women's oral health: the evolving science.

    PubMed

    Sinkford, Jeanne C; Valachovic, Richard W; Harrison, Sonja G

    2008-02-01

    The evidence base for women's oral health is emerging from legislative action, clinical research, and survey documentation. The Women's Health in the Dental School Curriculum study (1999) followed a similar study (1996) of medical school curricula. Both of these major efforts resulted from statutory mandates in the National Institutes of Health Revitalization Act of 1993 (updated October 2000). A major study of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) National Academy of Sciences in 2001 concluded that "the study of sex differences is evolving into a mature science." This IOM study documented the scientific basis for gender-related policy and research and challenged the dental research enterprise to conduct collaborative, cross-disciplinary research on gender-related issues in oral health, disease, and disparities. This report chronicles some of the factors that have and continue to influence concepts of women's oral health in dental education, research, and practice. Gender issues related to women's health are no longer restricted to reproductive issues but are being considered across the life span and include psychosocial factors that impact women's health and treatment outcomes.

  6. Consensus in evolving networks of mobile agents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baronchelli, Andrea; Díaz-Guilera, Albert

    2012-02-01

    Populations of mobile and communicating agents describe a vast array of technological and natural systems, ranging from sensor networks to animal groups. Here, we investigate how a group-level agreement may emerge in the continuously evolving networks defined by the local interactions of the moving individuals. We adopt a general scheme of motion in two dimensions and we let the individuals interact through the minimal naming game, a prototypical scheme to investigate social consensus. We distinguish different regimes of convergence determined by the emission range of the agents and by their mobility, and we identify the corresponding scaling behaviors of the consensus time. In the same way, we rationalize also the behavior of the maximum memory used during the convergence process, which determines the minimum cognitive/storage capacity needed by the individuals. Overall, we believe that the simple and general model presented in this talk can represent a helpful reference for a better understanding of the behavior of populations of mobile agents.

  7. Finding Aedes aegypti in a natural breeding site in an urban zone, Sao Paulo, Southeastern Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Lima-Camara, Tamara Nunes; Urbinatti, Paulo Roberto; Chiaravalloti-Neto, Francisco

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT This is the description of how nine Aedes aegypti larvae were found in a natural breeding site in the Pinheiros neighborhood, city of Sao Paulo, SP, Southeastern Brazil. The record was conducted in December 2014, during an entomological surveillance program of dengue virus vectors, with an active search of potential breeding sites, either artificial or natural. Finding Ae. aegypti larvae in a tree hole shows this species’ ability to use both artificial and natural environments as breeding sites and habitats, which points towards the importance of maintaining continuous surveillance on this mosquito in all kinds of water-holding containers. PMID:26982959

  8. Water in evolved lunar rocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robinson, Katharine Lynn

    The Moon was thought to be completely anhydrous until indigenous water was found in lunar samples in 2008. This discovery raised two fundamental questions about the Moon: how much water is present in the bulk Moon and is water uniformly distributed in the lunar interior? To address these questions, I studied a suite of lunar samples rich in a chemical component called KREEP (K, Rare Earth Elements, P), all of which are incompatible elements. Water behaves as an incompatible element in magmas, so KREEP-rich lunar samples are potentially water rich. In this dissertation, I present the results of a petrologic study of KREEP-rich lunar rocks, measurements of their water contents and deuterium (D) to hydrogen (H) ratios (D/H), and examined where these rocks fit into our understanding of water in the Moon as a whole. We performed a study of highly evolved, KREEP-rich lunar rocks called felsites and determined that they contain quartz. Using cooling rates derived from quartz-Ti thermometry, we show the felsites originated at a minimum pressure of ˜1 kbar, corresponding to a minimum depth of 20-25 km in the lunar crust. We calculate that at that pressure water would have been soluble in the melt, indicating that degassing of H2O from the felsite parental melts was likely minimal and hydrogen isotopes in intrusive rocks are likely unfractionated. We then measured D/H in apatite in KREEP-rich intrusive rocks to clarify the solar system source of the Moon's water. When viewed in the context of other lunar D/H studies, our results indicate there are at least three distinctive reservoirs in the lunar interior, including an ultra-low D reservoir that could represent a primitive component in the Moon's interior. Furthermore, our measurements of residual glass in a KREEP basalt show that the KREEP basaltic magmas contained 10 times less water than the source of the Apollo 17 pyroclastic glass beads, indicating that, though wetter than previously thought, the concentration of

  9. Sex-Specific Habitat Utilization and Differential Breeding Investments in Christmas Island Frigatebirds throughout the Breeding Cycle.

    PubMed

    Hennicke, Janos C; James, David J; Weimerskirch, Henri

    2015-01-01

    In seabirds, equal bi-parental care is the rule, as it is considered crucial for raising chicks successfully because seabirds forage in an environment with unpredictable and highly variable food supply. Frigatebirds forage in poor tropical waters, yet males reduce and even stop parental care soon after chick brooding, leaving the female to provision the chick alone for an extended fledging period. Using bird-borne tracking devices, male and female Christmas Island Frigatebirds (Fregata andrewsi) were investigated during the brooding, late chick rearing and post-fledging period to examine whether sexes exhibit foraging strategies that may be linked to differential breeding investments. During brooding, males and females showed similar foraging behaviour under average marine productivity of oceanic waters close to the colony, but males shifted to more distant and more productive habitats when conditions deteriorated to continue with reduced chick provisioning. During the late chick rearing period, females progressively increased their foraging range to the more distant but productive marine areas that only males had visited during brooding. Birds spent the non-breeding period roosting in highly productive waters of the Sunda Shelf. The sex-specific utilisation of three different foraging habitats with different primary productivity (oceanic, coastal, and shelf areas) allowed for temporal and spatial segregation in the exploitation of favourable habitats which seems to enable each sex to optimise its foraging profitability. In addition, post-fledging foraging movements of females suggest a biennial breeding cycle, while limited information on males suggests the possibility of an annual breeding cycle.

  10. What Technology? Reflections on Evolving Services

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Collins, Sharon

    2009-01-01

    Each year, the members of the EDUCAUSE Evolving Technologies Committee identify and research the evolving technologies that are having--or are predicted to have--the most direct impact on higher education institutions. The committee members choose the relevant topics, write white papers, and present their findings at the EDUCAUSE annual…

  11. Directional Communication in Evolved Multiagent Teams

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-06-10

    only a fraction of the observable state of the environment. In such tasks, communication facilitates sharing information among team members to...architecture is becoming increasingly important for evolving autonomous multiagent systems. Directional reception of signals, a design feature of communication ...Title ABSTRACT How to best design a communication architecture is becoming increasingly important for evolving autonomous multiagent systems. Directional

  12. Evolving Technologies: A View to Tomorrow

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tamarkin, Molly; Rodrigo, Shelley

    2011-01-01

    Technology leaders must participate in strategy creation as well as operational delivery within higher education institutions. The future of higher education--the view to tomorrow--is irrevocably integrated and intertwined with evolving technologies. This article focuses on two specific evolving technologies: (1) alternative IT sourcing; and (2)…

  13. [Pain caused by breeding in dogs].

    PubMed

    Reetz, I C

    1997-02-01

    According to German animal protection law it is not aloud to breed animals if it has to be expected that the offspring will suffer pain caused by hereditary characters. This paper deals with those hereditary defects which are used directly or indirectly (because of linkage to other desirable traits) in dog breeding. By the patho-physiological symptoms and the genetics of selected hereditary defects recommendations are exemplified how these defects should be handled in breeding that pain can be avoided.

  14. The Breeding Bird Survey, 1966

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Robbins, C.S.; Van Velzen, W.T.

    1967-01-01

    A Breeding Bird Survey of a large section on North America was conducted during June 1966. Cooperators ran a total of 585 Survey routes in 26 eastern States and 4 Canadian Provinces. Future coverage of established routes will enable changes in the abundance of North American breeding birds to be measured. Routes are selected at random on the basis of one-degree blocks of latitude and longitude. Each 241/2-mile route, with 3-minute stops spaced one-half mile apart, is driven by automobile. All birds heard or seen at the stops are recorded on special forms and the data are then transferred to machine punch cards. The average number of birds per route is tabulated by State, along with the total number of each species and the percent of routes and stops upon which they were recorded. Maps are presented showing the range and abundance of selected species. Also, a year-to-year comparison is made of populations of selected species on Maryland routes in 1965 and 1966.

  15. [New technology in maize breeding].

    PubMed

    Konstantinov, K; Mladenović, S; Stojkov, S; Delić, N; Gosić, S; Petrović, R; Lević, J; Denić, M

    1992-01-01

    Results obtained by several approaches in the application of Biotechnology in maize breeding are reviewed. RFLP technology in the determination of genetic variation; gene transfer by the use of different methods of gene delivery and the determination of gene integration. Three technologies for foreign gene introduction have been applied; injection of plasmid pRT100 neo into archesporial tissue before micro and macro sporogenesis, slightly modified pollen-tube pathway technology and dry seed incubation in plasmid DNA solution. NPTII gene integration was followed by dot-blot and Southern blot analysis of plant DNA of both T1 and T2 plants. Gene expression was analysed by neomycin phosphotransferase activity. Transformed plants contained the selective NPTII gene sequence in an active form. Bacterial gene integration induced several heritable changes of plant phenotype. As an important change, alteration of the flowering time has been used as a criterion for selection and plant propagation to keep transformed progeny. Besides plant genome transformation, endogenous bacteria living in different maize tissue were found. As a perspective approach for biotechnology application in maize breeding biological vaccine construction has been selected. Therefore, antagonistic effect of gram positive bacterial strains to several pathogenic fungi was investigated. Results obtained after in vivo experiments are discussed.

  16. Implementation of Genomic Prediction in Lolium perenne (L.) Breeding Populations

    PubMed Central

    Grinberg, Nastasiya F.; Lovatt, Alan; Hegarty, Matt; Lovatt, Andi; Skøt, Kirsten P.; Kelly, Rhys; Blackmore, Tina; Thorogood, Danny; King, Ross D.; Armstead, Ian; Powell, Wayne; Skøt, Leif

    2016-01-01

    Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) is one of the most widely grown forage grasses in temperate agriculture. In order to maintain and increase its usage as forage in livestock agriculture, there is a continued need for improvement in biomass yield, quality, disease resistance, and seed yield. Genetic gain for traits such as biomass yield has been relatively modest. This has been attributed to its long breeding cycle, and the necessity to use population based breeding methods. Thanks to recent advances in genotyping techniques there is increasing interest in genomic selection from which genomically estimated breeding values are derived. In this paper we compare the classical RRBLUP model with state-of-the-art machine learning techniques that should yield themselves easily to use in GS and demonstrate their application to predicting quantitative traits in a breeding population of L. perenne. Prediction accuracies varied from 0 to 0.59 depending on trait, prediction model and composition of the training population. The BLUP model produced the highest prediction accuracies for most traits and training populations. Forage quality traits had the highest accuracies compared to yield related traits. There appeared to be no clear pattern to the effect of the training population composition on the prediction accuracies. The heritability of the forage quality traits was generally higher than for the yield related traits, and could partly explain the difference in accuracy. Some population structure was evident in the breeding populations, and probably contributed to the varying effects of training population on the predictions. The average linkage disequilibrium between adjacent markers ranged from 0.121 to 0.215. Higher marker density and larger training population closely related with the test population are likely to improve the prediction accuracy. PMID:26904088

  17. Does food supplementation really enhance productivity of breeding birds?

    PubMed

    Harrison, Timothy J E; Smith, Jennifer A; Martin, Graham R; Chamberlain, Dan E; Bearhop, Stuart; Robb, Gillian N; Reynolds, S James

    2010-10-01

    Food availability influences multiple stages of the breeding cycle of birds, and supplementary feeding has helped in its understanding. Most supplementation studies have reported advancements of laying, whilst others, albeit less numerous, have also demonstrated fitness benefits such as larger clutches, shorter incubation periods, and greater hatching success. Relatively few studies, however, have investigated the effects of supplementary feeding for protracted periods across multiple stages of the breeding cycle. These effects are important to understand since long-term food supplementation of birds is recommended in urban habitats and is used as a tool to increase reproductive output in endangered species. Here, we compare the breeding phenology and productivity of blue tits Cyanistes caeruleus and great tits Parus major breeding in food-supplemented and non-supplemented blocks in a broadleaf woodland in central England over three seasons (2006-2008). Supplementation was provided continuously from several weeks pre-laying until hatching, and had multiple significant effects. Most notably, supplementation reduced brood size significantly in both species, by half a chick or more at hatching (after controlling for year and hatching date). Reduced brood sizes in supplemented pairs were driven by significantly smaller clutches in both species and, in blue tits, significantly lower hatching success. These are novel and concerning findings of food supplementation. As expected, supplementary feeding advanced laying and shortened incubation periods significantly in both species. We discuss the striking parallels between our findings and patterns in blue and great tit reproduction in urban habitats, and conclude that supplementary feeding may not always enhance the breeding productivity of birds.

  18. Genomics-assisted breeding in fruit trees

    PubMed Central

    Iwata, Hiroyoshi; Minamikawa, Mai F.; Kajiya-Kanegae, Hiromi; Ishimori, Motoyuki; Hayashi, Takeshi

    2016-01-01

    Recent advancements in genomic analysis technologies have opened up new avenues to promote the efficiency of plant breeding. Novel genomics-based approaches for plant breeding and genetics research, such as genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and genomic selection (GS), are useful, especially in fruit tree breeding. The breeding of fruit trees is hindered by their long generation time, large plant size, long juvenile phase, and the necessity to wait for the physiological maturity of the plant to assess the marketable product (fruit). In this article, we describe the potential of genomics-assisted breeding, which uses these novel genomics-based approaches, to break through these barriers in conventional fruit tree breeding. We first introduce the molecular marker systems and whole-genome sequence data that are available for fruit tree breeding. Next we introduce the statistical methods for biparental linkage and quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping as well as GWAS and GS. We then review QTL mapping, GWAS, and GS studies conducted on fruit trees. We also review novel technologies for rapid generation advancement. Finally, we note the future prospects of genomics-assisted fruit tree breeding and problems that need to be overcome in the breeding. PMID:27069395

  19. Chemical classification of cattle. 1. Breed groups.

    PubMed

    Baker, C M; Manwell, C

    1980-01-01

    From approximately 1000 papers with data on protein polymorphism in some 216 breeds of cattle, 10 polymorphic proteins were compared in means and variances of gene frequencies (arcsin p 1/2) for ten well-recognized breed groups for 196 of the breeds. The polymorphic proteins were alpha-lactalbumin, beta-lactoglobulin, caseins (alpha s1, beta and chi), serum albumin, transferrin, haemoglobin, amylase I and carbonic anhydrase II. The breed groups were North European, Pied Lowland, European Red brachyceros, Channel Island brachyceros, Upland brachyceros, primigenius-brachyceros mixed, primigenius, Indian Zebu, African Humped (with Zebu admixture), and African Humped (Sanga). The coherence within groups and the differences between groups are often impressive. Only carbonic anhydrase II fails to differentiate at least some of the major breed groups. In some cases paradoxical distributions of rare genetic variants can be explained by a more detailed inspection of breed history. The chemical data support the morphological and geographical divisions of cattle into major breed groups. There are three distinct but related brachyceros groups; for some polymorphisms the two Channel Island breeds, the Jersey and the Guernsey, are quite divergent. Although some authorities have considered the Pied Lowland as primigenius, it is a very distinct breed group.

  20. Genomics-assisted breeding in fruit trees.

    PubMed

    Iwata, Hiroyoshi; Minamikawa, Mai F; Kajiya-Kanegae, Hiromi; Ishimori, Motoyuki; Hayashi, Takeshi

    2016-01-01

    Recent advancements in genomic analysis technologies have opened up new avenues to promote the efficiency of plant breeding. Novel genomics-based approaches for plant breeding and genetics research, such as genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and genomic selection (GS), are useful, especially in fruit tree breeding. The breeding of fruit trees is hindered by their long generation time, large plant size, long juvenile phase, and the necessity to wait for the physiological maturity of the plant to assess the marketable product (fruit). In this article, we describe the potential of genomics-assisted breeding, which uses these novel genomics-based approaches, to break through these barriers in conventional fruit tree breeding. We first introduce the molecular marker systems and whole-genome sequence data that are available for fruit tree breeding. Next we introduce the statistical methods for biparental linkage and quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping as well as GWAS and GS. We then review QTL mapping, GWAS, and GS studies conducted on fruit trees. We also review novel technologies for rapid generation advancement. Finally, we note the future prospects of genomics-assisted fruit tree breeding and problems that need to be overcome in the breeding.

  1. Differentiation among Spanish sheep breeds using microsatellites

    PubMed Central

    Arranz, Juan-José; Bayón, Yolanda; Primitivo, Fermín San

    2001-01-01

    Genetic variability at 18 microsatellites was analysed on the basis of individual genotypes in five Spanish breeds of sheep – Churra, Latxa, Castellana, Rasa-Aragonesa and Merino -, with Awassi also being studied as a reference breed. The degree of population subdivision calculated between Spanish breeds from FST diversity indices was around 7% of total variability. A high degree of reliability was obtained for individual-breed assignment from the 18 loci by using different approaches among which the Bayesian method provided to be the most efficient, with an accuracy for nine microsatellites of over 99%. Analysis of the Bayesian assignment criterion illustrated the divergence between any one breed and the others, which was highest for Awassi sheep, while no great differences were evident among the Spanish breeds. Relationships between individuals were analysed from the proportion of shared alleles. The resulting dendrogram showed a remarkable breed structure, with the highest level of clustering among members of the Spanish breeds in Latxa and the lowest in Merino sheep, the latter breed exhibiting a peculiar pattern of clustering, with animals grouped into several closely set nodes. Analysis of individual genotypes provided valuable information for understanding intra- and inter-population genetic differences and allowed for a discussion with previously reported results using populations as taxonomic units. PMID:11712973

  2. Fish genome manipulation and directional breeding.

    PubMed

    Ye, Ding; Zhu, ZuoYan; Sun, YongHua

    2015-02-01

    Aquaculture is one of the fastest developing agricultural industries worldwide. One of the most important factors for sustainable aquaculture is the development of high performing culture strains. Genome manipulation offers a powerful method to achieve rapid and directional breeding in fish. We review the history of fish breeding methods based on classical genome manipulation, including polyploidy breeding and nuclear transfer. Then, we discuss the advances and applications of fish directional breeding based on transgenic technology and recently developed genome editing technologies. These methods offer increased efficiency, precision and predictability in genetic improvement over traditional methods.

  3. Continuous Problem of Function Continuity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jayakody, Gaya; Zazkis, Rina

    2015-01-01

    We examine different definitions presented in textbooks and other mathematical sources for "continuity of a function at a point" and "continuous function" in the context of introductory level Calculus. We then identify problematic issues related to definitions of continuity and discontinuity: inconsistency and absence of…

  4. Social networks: Evolving graphs with memory dependent edges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grindrod, Peter; Parsons, Mark

    2011-10-01

    The plethora of digital communication technologies, and their mass take up, has resulted in a wealth of interest in social network data collection and analysis in recent years. Within many such networks the interactions are transient: thus those networks evolve over time. In this paper we introduce a class of models for such networks using evolving graphs with memory dependent edges, which may appear and disappear according to their recent history. We consider time discrete and time continuous variants of the model. We consider the long term asymptotic behaviour as a function of parameters controlling the memory dependence. In particular we show that such networks may continue evolving forever, or else may quench and become static (containing immortal and/or extinct edges). This depends on the existence or otherwise of certain infinite products and series involving age dependent model parameters. We show how to differentiate between the alternatives based on a finite set of observations. To test these ideas we show how model parameters may be calibrated based on limited samples of time dependent data, and we apply these concepts to three real networks: summary data on mobile phone use from a developing region; online social-business network data from China; and disaggregated mobile phone communications data from a reality mining experiment in the US. In each case we show that there is evidence for memory dependent dynamics, such as that embodied within the class of models proposed here.

  5. Warning signals evolve to disengage Batesian mimics.

    PubMed

    Franks, Daniel W; Ruxton, Graeme D; Sherratt, Thomas N

    2009-01-01

    Prey that are unprofitable to attack are typically conspicuous in appearance. Conventional theory assumes that these warning signals have evolved in response to predator receiver biases. However, such biases might be a symptom rather than a cause of warning signals. We therefore examine an alternative theory: that conspicuousness evolves in unprofitable prey to avoid confusion with profitable prey. One might wonder why unprofitable prey do not find a cryptic means to be distinct from profitable prey, reducing both their risk of confusion with profitable prey and their rate of detection by predators. Here we present the first coevolutionary model to allow for Batesian mimicry and signals with different levels of detectability. We find that unprofitable prey do indeed evolve ways of distinguishing themselves using cryptic signals, particularly when appearance traits can evolve in multiple dimensions. However, conspicuous warning signals readily evolve in unprofitable prey when there are more ways to look different from the background than to match it. Moreover, the more unprofitable the prey species, the higher its evolved conspicuousness. Our results provide strong support for the argument that unprofitable species evolve conspicuous signals to avoid confusion with profitable prey and indicate that peak shift in conspicuousness-linked traits is a major factor in its establishment.

  6. Out of Gondwanaland; the evolutionary history of cooperative breeding and social behaviour among crows, magpies, jays and allies

    PubMed Central

    Ekman, Jan; Ericson, Per G.P

    2006-01-01

    Cooperative breeding is comparatively rare among birds in the mainly temperate and boreal Northern Hemisphere. Here we test if the distribution of breeding systems reflects a response to latitude by means of a phylogenetic analysis using correlates with geographical range among the corvids (crows, jays, magpies and allied groups). The corvids trace their ancestry to the predominantly cooperative ‘Corvida’ branch of oscine passerines from the Australo-Papuan region on the ancient Gondwanaland supercontinent, but we could not confirm the ancestral state of the breeding system within the family, while family cohesion may be ancestral. Initial diversification among pair-breeding taxa that are basal in the corvid phylogeny, represented by genera such as Pyrrhocorax and Dendrocitta, indicates that the corvid family in its current form could have evolved from pair-breeding ancestors only after they had escaped the Australo-Papuan shield. Within the family, cooperative breeding (alloparental care/family cohesion) is strongly correlated to latitude and its predominance in species maintaining a southerly distribution indicates a secondary evolution of cooperative breeding in the lineage leading away from the basal corvids. Multiple transitions show plasticity in the breeding system, indicating a response to latitude rather than evolutionary inertia. The evolutionary background to the loss of cooperative breeding among species with a northerly distribution is complex and differs between species, indicating a response to a variety of selection forces. Family cohesion where the offspring provide alloparental care is a main route to cooperatively breeding groups among corvids. Some corvid species lost only alloparental care, while maintaining coherent family groups. Other species lost family cohesion and, as a corollary, they also lost the behaviour where retained offspring provide alloparental care. PMID:16600890

  7. Out of Gondwanaland; the evolutionary history of cooperative breeding and social behaviour among crows, magpies, jays and allies.

    PubMed

    Ekman, Jan; Ericson, Per G P

    2006-05-07

    Cooperative breeding is comparatively rare among birds in the mainly temperate and boreal Northern Hemisphere. Here we test if the distribution of breeding systems reflects a response to latitude by means of a phylogenetic analysis using correlates with geographical range among the corvids (crows, jays, magpies and allied groups). The corvids trace their ancestry to the predominantly cooperative 'Corvida' branch of oscine passerines from the Australo-Papuan region on the ancient Gondwanaland supercontinent, but we could not confirm the ancestral state of the breeding system within the family, while family cohesion may be ancestral. Initial diversification among pair-breeding taxa that are basal in the corvid phylogeny, represented by genera such as Pyrrhocorax and Dendrocitta, indicates that the corvid family in its current form could have evolved from pair-breeding ancestors only after they had escaped the Australo-Papuan shield. Within the family, cooperative breeding (alloparental care/family cohesion) is strongly correlated to latitude and its predominance in species maintaining a southerly distribution indicates a secondary evolution of cooperative breeding in the lineage leading away from the basal corvids. Multiple transitions show plasticity in the breeding system, indicating a response to latitude rather than evolutionary inertia. The evolutionary background to the loss of cooperative breeding among species with a northerly distribution is complex and differs between species, indicating a response to a variety of selection forces. Family cohesion where the offspring provide alloparental care is a main route to cooperatively breeding groups among corvids. Some corvid species lost only alloparental care, while maintaining coherent family groups. Other species lost family cohesion and, as a corollary, they also lost the behaviour where retained offspring provide alloparental care.

  8. The value of resequence data for poultry breeding: a primary layer breeder perspective.

    PubMed

    Fulton, Janet E

    2014-02-01

    Poultry breeding companies are facing a new paradigm. Since 2004, extensive resources have been developed to increase understanding of the fundamental biology of the chicken. The chicken genome has been sequenced and revised twice, millions of novel DNA variants have been identified, and new tools have been created that allow rapid and inexpensive detection of these DNA variations. These developments have led to the establishment of molecular-based breeding programs within major poultry breeding companies that are revolutionizing the primary poultry breeding industries. Costs of sequencing continue to drop and are predicted to eventually reach the point where it is feasible to sequence the entire genome of elite birds before selection. There are multiple challenges to be resolved before this information can be fully incorporated into a breeding program. These include handling and analyzing the extremely large data sets generated, understanding which genes, variants, or both are relevant for commercial production traits, development of new bio-informatic tools, and integration of molecular information with traditional breeding programs. The novel variation identified within elite commercial lines will lead to enhancements in commercial breeding programs. Applications of this information include whole genomic selection, parentage identification, trait association studies, and quality control.

  9. Bull breeding soundness, semen evaluation and cattle productivity.

    PubMed

    Chenoweth, P J; McPherson, F J

    2016-06-01

    The bull breeding soundness evaluation (BBSE) has evolved as a cost-effective veterinary procedure which provides benefits such as risk-reduction and improvements in strategic bull usage, herd fertility and economics. Semen evaluation is an important component of the BBSE when performed appropriately; a consideration that is increasingly addressed by third party andrology laboratories. The combination of competent physical/reproductive exams (including scrotal circumference measurements) and semen evaluations can contribute greatly to the fertility and economics of individual herds as well as adding to understanding of those factors which affect cattle fertility. Despite such advantages, there remain challenges in achieving full acceptance of BBSEs, particularly by the dairy industry and in developing countries.

  10. Continuation Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fremont Unified School District, CA.

    The Fremont, California Unified School District organized a continuing education program through a workshop held in the summer of 1968. This paper presents the results of that workshop. Following a statement of philosophy, an outline of the characteristics of the continuation student, and an outline of the functions of the program, an overview of…

  11. Breeding experience, alternative reproductive strategies and reproductive success in a captive colony of zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata).

    PubMed

    Baran, Nicole M; Adkins-Regan, Elizabeth

    2014-01-01

    Birds exhibit a remarkable diversity of different reproductive strategies both between and within species. Species such as the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) may evolve the flexible use of alternative reproductive strategies, as well as benefit from prior breeding experience, which allows them to adaptively respond to unpredictable environments. In birds, the flexible use of alternative reproductive strategies, such as extra-pair mating, has been reported to be associated with fast reproduction, high mortality and environmental variability. However, little is known about the role of previous breeding experience in the adaptive use of alternative reproductive strategies. Here we performed an in-depth study of reproductive outcomes in a population of domesticated zebra finches, testing the impact of prior breeding experience on the use of alternative reproductive strategies and reproductive success. We provide evidence that older females with prior breeding experience are quicker to initiate a clutch with a new partner and have increased success in chick rearing, even in a captive colony of zebra finches with minimal foraging demands. We also find evidence that the breeding experience of other females in the same social group influences reproductive investment by female zebra finches. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the use of alternative reproductive strategies in female zebra finches is associated with previous failed breeding attempts with the same pair partner. The results provide evidence that age and breeding experience play important roles in the flexible use of both facultative and adaptive reproductive strategies in female zebra finches.

  12. Breeding sugarcane for temperate and cold environments

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Louisiana represents one of the world’s more temperate environments where sugarcane is commercially grown. Since its inception in the 1920s, The USDA-ARS breeding program at the Sugarcane Research Laboratory in Houma, Louisiana, U.S.A. has focused on breeding varieties adapted to this unique envir...

  13. Breeding commercial sugarcane varieties for the industry

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recent literature suggests that sugarcane breeding in the United States has reached a sugar yield plateau. If so, this could have huge implications for the future of the industry and breeding per se because yield improvement might have to be achieved through secondary, non-sugar-related traits, or t...

  14. Breeding Perspectives and Programs at East Lansing

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    USDA-ARS sugar beet breeding activities for both Aphanomyces resistance and CMS/O-type conversion at East Lansing reach back to the 1940’s, with variety testing activities at Michigan State University reaching back to circa 1911. Many of those contributions are well known in the sugar beet breeding ...

  15. Sugarcane Improvement Through Breeding and Biotechnology

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The advancements in sugarcane breeding and the improvement of sugarcane through biotechnology have been reviewed by a team of leading sugarcane specialists from around the world. Topics covered in the breeding section include the evolution and origin of sugarcane, early history of conventional sugar...

  16. Breed-specific dog-dandruff allergens.

    PubMed

    Lindgren, S; Belin, L; Dreborg, S; Einarsson, R; Påhlman, I

    1988-08-01

    Fifty-one patients with clinical history of dog allergy were skin prick tested with eight individual standardized dog breed-allergen preparations, one mixed breed-allergen preparation (Poodle/Alsatian), dog-serum albumin, and histamine hydrochloride, 1 mg/ml. All extracts were characterized by crossed immunoelectrophoresis and crossed radioimmunoelectrophoresis with a pool of sera from patients clinically sensitive to dog. The dog-breed extracts contained common antigens/allergens, as well as components represented only in one or two dog-breed extracts. The concentration corresponding 1000 BU/ml varied from 16 to 100 micrograms of protein per milliliter. The sensitivity of skin prick test was 67% to 88% for the various dog breed-allergen preparations, but only 18% for dog-serum albumin. Significant difference between the skin test response to different dog breed-allergen preparations indicating dog breed-specific allergens was obtained in 15% of the patients. There was no significant correlation between skin prick test results and symptoms related to a specific dog breed.

  17. Mean EPDs reported by different breeds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Beef cattle genetic evaluations result in expected progeny differences (EPDs), which can be used to select animals for growth, productivity, carcass composition, and, most recently, economic value. Breed averages allow producers to compare the genetic value of potential breeding stock against their ...

  18. Breeding system evolution influenced the geographic expansion and diversification of the core Corvoidea (Aves: Passeriformes).

    PubMed

    Marki, Petter Z; Fabre, Pierre-Henri; Jønsson, Knud A; Rahbek, Carsten; Fjeldså, Jon; Kennedy, Jonathan D

    2015-07-01

    Birds vary greatly in their life-history strategies, including their breeding systems, which range from brood parasitism to a system with multiple nonbreeding helpers at the nest. By far the most common arrangement, however, is where both parents participate in raising the young. The traits associated with parental care have been suggested to affect dispersal propensity and lineage diversification, but to date tests of this potential relationship at broad temporal and spatial scales have been limited. Here, using data from a globally distributed group of corvoid birds in concordance with state-dependent speciation and extinction models, we suggest that pair breeding is associated with elevated speciation rates. Estimates of transition between breeding systems imply that cooperative lineages frequently evolve biparental care, whereas pair breeders rarely become cooperative. We further highlight that these groups have differences in their spatial distributions, with pair breeders overrepresented on islands, and cooperative breeders mainly found on continents. Finally, we find that speciation rates appear to be significantly higher on islands compared to continents. These results imply that the transition from cooperative breeding to pair breeding was likely a significant contributing factor facilitating dispersal across tropical archipelagos, and subsequent world-wide phylogenetic expansion among the core Corvoidea.

  19. Sex, long life and the evolutionary transition to cooperative breeding in birds.

    PubMed

    Downing, Philip A; Cornwallis, Charlie K; Griffin, Ashleigh S

    2015-10-07

    Long life is a typical feature of individuals living in cooperative societies. One explanation is that group living lowers mortality, which selects for longer life. Alternatively, long life may make the evolution of cooperation more likely by ensuring a long breeding tenure, making helping behaviour and queuing for breeding positions worthwhile. The benefit of queuing will, however, depend on whether individuals gain indirect fitness benefits while helping, which is determined by female promiscuity. Where promiscuity is high and therefore the indirect fitness benefits of helping are low, cooperation can still be favoured by an even longer life span. We present the results of comparative analyses designed to test the likelihood of a causal relationship between longevity and cooperative breeding by reconstructing ancestral states of cooperative breeding across birds, and by examining the effect of female promiscuity on the relationship between these two traits. We found that long life makes the evolution of cooperation more likely and that promiscuous cooperative species are exceptionally long lived. These results make sense of promiscuity in cooperative breeders and clarify the importance of life-history traits in the evolution of cooperative breeding, illustrating that cooperation can evolve via the combination of indirect and direct fitness benefits.

  20. When mothers need others: The impact of hominin life history evolution on cooperative breeding.

    PubMed

    Kramer, Karen L; Otárola-Castillo, Erik

    2015-07-01

    The evolution of cooperative breeding is particularly complex in humans because many other traits that directly affect parental care (shorter birth intervals, increased offspring survivorship, juvenile dependence, and older ages at dispersal) also emerge during the Pleistocene. If human cooperative breeding is ancient, it likely evolved in a hominin lacking a fully modern life history. However, the impact that changing life history traits has on parental care and cooperative breeding has not been analytically investigated. We develop an exploratory model to simulate an economic problem that would have arisen over the course of hominin life history evolution to identify those transitions that produced the strongest pressures for cooperative childrearing. The model generates two central predictions. First, help within maternal-offspring groups can support early changes in juvenile dependence, dispersal age, birth intervals, and fertility. If so, maternal-juvenile cooperation may be an important but understudied step in the evolution of human cooperative breeding. Second, pressure to recruit adult cooperation is most pronounced under more derived conditions of late dispersal and later ages of juvenile dependence, with a strong interaction at short birth intervals. Our findings indicate that changes in life history traits that affect parental care are critical in considering background selective forces that shaped the evolution of cooperative breeding.

  1. Sex, long life and the evolutionary transition to cooperative breeding in birds

    PubMed Central

    Downing, Philip A.; Cornwallis, Charlie K.; Griffin, Ashleigh S.

    2015-01-01

    Long life is a typical feature of individuals living in cooperative societies. One explanation is that group living lowers mortality, which selects for longer life. Alternatively, long life may make the evolution of cooperation more likely by ensuring a long breeding tenure, making helping behaviour and queuing for breeding positions worthwhile. The benefit of queuing will, however, depend on whether individuals gain indirect fitness benefits while helping, which is determined by female promiscuity. Where promiscuity is high and therefore the indirect fitness benefits of helping are low, cooperation can still be favoured by an even longer life span. We present the results of comparative analyses designed to test the likelihood of a causal relationship between longevity and cooperative breeding by reconstructing ancestral states of cooperative breeding across birds, and by examining the effect of female promiscuity on the relationship between these two traits. We found that long life makes the evolution of cooperation more likely and that promiscuous cooperative species are exceptionally long lived. These results make sense of promiscuity in cooperative breeders and clarify the importance of life-history traits in the evolution of cooperative breeding, illustrating that cooperation can evolve via the combination of indirect and direct fitness benefits. PMID:26400743

  2. Genomic selection in animal breeding programs.

    PubMed

    van der Werf, Julius

    2013-01-01

    Genomic selection can have a major impact on animal breeding programs, especially where traits that are important in the breeding objective are hard to select for otherwise. Genomic selection provides more accurate estimates for breeding value earlier in the life of breeding animals, giving more selection accuracy and allowing lower generation intervals. From sheep to dairy cattle, the rates of genetic improvement could increase from 20 to 100 % and hard-to-measure traits can be improved more effectively.Reference populations for genomic selection need to be large, with thousands of animals measured for phenotype and genotype. The smaller the effective size of the breeding population, the larger the DNA segments they potentially share and the more accurate genomic prediction will be. The relative contribution of information from relatives in the reference population will be larger if the baseline accuracy is low, but such information is limited to closely related individuals and does not last over generations.

  3. Endometritis: Managing Persistent Post-Breeding Endometritis.

    PubMed

    Canisso, Igor F; Stewart, Jamie; Coutinho da Silva, Marco A

    2016-12-01

    Endometritis was rated as the third most common medical problem encountered in adult horses in North America. It is the leading cause of subfertility in broodmares and is a major contributor to economic loss in the horse breeding industry, with pregnancy rates reported to be as low as 21% in mares with severe endometritis. Endometritis may be categorized as: endometrosis (chronic degenerative endometritis), acute, chronic, active, dormant, subclinical, clinical, and persistent post-breeding. These classifications are not mutually exclusive, and mares may change categories within breeding seasons or estrous cycles or may fit in multiple classifications. This chapter will focus on discussing etiology and management strategies for mares affected by persistent post-breeding endometritis. Overall, these mares are considered subfertile but acceptable pregnancy and foaling rates can be achieved with appropriate breeding management.

  4. Ecological constraints, life history traits and the evolution of cooperative breeding.

    PubMed

    Hatchwell; Komdeur

    2000-06-01

    The ecological constraints hypothesis is widely accepted as an explanation for the evolution of delayed dispersal in cooperatively breeding birds. Intraspecific studies offer the strongest support. Observational studies have demonstrated a positive association between the severity of ecological constraints and the prevalence of cooperation, and experimental studies in which constraints on independent breeding were relaxed resulted in helpers moving to adopt the vacant breeding opportunities. However, this hypothesis has proved less successful in explaining why cooperative breeding has evolved in some species or lineages but not in others. Comparative studies have failed to identify ecological factors that differ consistently between cooperative and noncooperative species. The life history hypothesis, which emphasizes the role of life history traits in the evolution of cooperative breeding, offers a solution to this difficulty. A recent analysis showed that low adult mortality and low dispersal predisposed certain lineages to show cooperative behaviour, given the right ecological conditions. This represents an important advance, not least by offering an explanation for the patchy phylogenetic distribution of cooperative breeding. We discuss the complementary nature of these two hypotheses and suggest that rather than regarding life history traits as predisposing and ecological factors as facilitating cooperation, they are more likely to act in concert. While acknowledging that different cooperative systems may be a consequence of different selective pressures, we suggest that to identify the key differences between cooperative and noncooperative species, a broad constraints hypothesis that incorporates ecological and life history traits in a single measure of 'turnover of breeding opportunities' may provide the most promising avenue for future comparative studies. Copyright 2000 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.

  5. Carry-over body mass effect from winter to breeding in a resident seabird, the little penguin.

    PubMed

    Salton, Marcus; Saraux, Claire; Dann, Peter; Chiaradia, André

    2015-01-01

    Using body mass and breeding data of individual penguins collected continuously over 7 years (2002-2008), we examined carry-over effects of winter body mass on timing of laying and breeding success in a resident seabird, the little penguin (Eudyptula minor). The austral winter month of July consistently had the lowest rate of colony attendance, which confirmed our expectation that penguins work hard to find resources at this time between breeding seasons. Contrary to our expectation, body mass in winter (July) was equal or higher than in the period before ('moult-recovery') and after ('pre-breeding') in 5 of 7 years for males and in all 7 years for females. We provided evidence of a carry-over effect of body mass from winter to breeding; females and males with higher body mass in winter were more likely to breed early and males with higher body mass in winter were likely to breed successfully. Sex differences might relate to sex-specific breeding tasks, where females may use their winter reserves to invest in egg-laying, whereas males use their winter reserves to sustain the longer fasts ashore during courtship. Our findings suggest that resident seabirds like little penguins can also benefit from a carry-over effect of winter body mass on subsequent breeding.

  6. Genomic evaluation of regional dairy cattle breeds in single-breed and multibreed contexts.

    PubMed

    Jónás, D; Ducrocq, V; Fritz, S; Baur, A; Sanchez, M-P; Croiseau, P

    2017-02-01

    An important prerequisite for high prediction accuracy in genomic prediction is the availability of a large training population, which allows accurate marker effect estimation. This requirement is not fulfilled in case of regional breeds with a limited number of breeding animals. We assessed the efficiency of the current French routine genomic evaluation procedure in four regional breeds (Abondance, Tarentaise, French Simmental and Vosgienne) as well as the potential benefits when the training populations consisting of males and females of these breeds are merged to form a multibreed training population. Genomic evaluation was 5-11% more accurate than a pedigree-based BLUP in three of the four breeds, while the numerically smallest breed showed a < 1% increase in accuracy. Multibreed genomic evaluation was beneficial for two breeds (Abondance and French Simmental) with maximum gains of 5 and 8% in correlation coefficients between yield deviations and genomic estimated breeding values, when compared to the single-breed genomic evaluation results. Inflation of genomic evaluation of young candidates was also reduced. Our results indicate that genomic selection can be effective in regional breeds as well. Here, we provide empirical evidence proving that genetic distance between breeds is only one of the factors affecting the efficiency of multibreed genomic evaluation.

  7. Patterns of molecular genetic variation among cat breeds.

    PubMed

    Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; David, Victor A; Pflueger, Solveig M; Lindblad-Toh, Kerstin; Wade, Claire M; O'Brien, Stephen J; Johnson, Warren E

    2008-01-01

    Genetic variation in cat breeds was assessed utilizing a panel of short tandem repeat (STR) loci genotyped in 38 cat breeds and 284 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) genotyped in 24 breeds. Population structure in cat breeds generally reflects their recent ancestry and absence of strong breed barriers between some breeds. There is a wide range in the robustness of population definition, from breeds demonstrating high definition to breeds with as little as a third of their genetic variation partitioning into a single population. Utilizing the STRUCTURE algorithm, there was no clear demarcation of the number of population subdivisions; 16 breeds could not be resolved into independent populations, the consequence of outcrossing in established breeds to recently developed breeds with common ancestry. These 16 breeds were divided into 6 populations. Ninety-six percent of cats in a sample set of 1040 were correctly assigned to their classified breed or breed group/population. Average breed STR heterozygosities ranged from moderate (0.53; Havana, Korat) to high (0.85; Norwegian Forest Cat, Manx). Most of the variation in cat breeds was observed within a breed population (83.7%), versus 16.3% of the variation observed between populations. The hierarchical relationships of cat breeds is poorly defined as demonstrated by phylogenetic trees generated from both STR and SNP data, though phylogeographic grouping of breeds derived completely or in part from Southeast Asian ancestors was apparent.

  8. Breeding objectives for Targhee sheep.

    PubMed

    Borg, R C; Notter, D R; Kuehn, L A; Kott, R W

    2007-11-01

    Breeding objectives were developed for Targhee sheep under rangeland production conditions. Traits considered were those for which EPD were available from the US National Sheep Improvement Program and included direct and maternal effects on 120-d weaning weight (WW and MM, respectively); yearling weight (YW); yearling fleece weight, fiber diameter, and staple length; and percent lamb crop (PLC), measured as the number of lambs born per 100 ewes lambing. A bioeconomic model was used to predict the effects of a change of 1 additive SD in EPD for each trait, holding all other traits constant at their mean, on animal performance, feed requirements, feed costs, and economic returns. Resulting economic weightings were then used to derive selection indexes. Indexes were derived separately for 3 prolificacy levels (1.41, 1.55, and 1.70 lambs/ewe lambing), 2 triplet survival levels (50 and 67%), 2 lamb pricing policies (with or without discounting of prices for heavy feeder lambs), and 3 forage cost scenarios (renting pasture, purchasing hay, or reducing flock size to accommodate increased nutrient requirements for production). Increasing PLC generally had the largest impact on profitability, although an increase in WW was equally important, with low feed costs and no discounting of prices for heavy feeder lambs. Increases in PLC were recommended at all 3 prolificacy levels, but with low triplet survival the value of increasing PLC eventually declined as the mean litter size increased to approximately 2.15 lambs/ewe lambing and above. Increasing YW (independent of WW) increased ewe maintenance costs and reduced profitability. Predicted changes in breeding values for WW and YW under index selection varied with lamb pricing policy and feed costs. With low feed costs or no discounts for heavy lambs, YW increased at a modest rate in association with increasing WW, but with high feed costs or discounting of heavy lambs, genetic trends in WW were reduced by approximately 50% to

  9. Genetic structure of European sheep breeds.

    PubMed

    Lawson Handley, L-J; Byrne, K; Santucci, F; Townsend, S; Taylor, M; Bruford, M W; Hewitt, G M

    2007-12-01

    Large-scale evaluations of genetic diversity in domestic livestock populations are necessary so that region-specific conservation measures can be implemented. We performed the first such survey in European sheep by analysing 820 individuals from 29 geographically and phenotypically diverse breeds and a closely related wild species at 23 microsatellite loci. In contrast to most other domestic species, we found evidence of widespread heterozygote deficit within breeds, even after removing loci with potentially high frequency of null alleles. This is most likely due to subdivision among flocks (Wahlund effect) and use of a small number of rams for breeding. Levels of heterozygosity were slightly higher in southern than in northern breeds, consistent with declining diversity with distance from the Near Eastern centre of domestication. Our results highlight the importance of isolation in terms of both geography and management in augmenting genetic differentiation through genetic drift, with isolated northern European breeds showing the greatest divergence and hence being obvious targets for conservation. Finally, using a Bayesian cluster analysis, we uncovered evidence of admixture between breeds, which has important implications for breed management.

  10. Flow cytometry in plant breeding.

    PubMed

    Ochatt, Sergio J

    2008-07-01

    Since the first report on the flow cytometric study of plant material 35 years ago, analyzing the nuclear DNA content of field bean, an ever increasing number of applications of FCM has been developed and applied in plant science and industry, but a similar length of time elapsed before the appearance of the first complete volume devoted to FCM of plant cells. Most published information on the uses of FCM addresses various aspects of animal (including human) cell biology, thus failing to provide a pertinent substitute. FCM represents an ideal means for the analysis of both cells and subcellular particles, with a potentially large number of parameters analyzed both rapidly, simultaneously, and quantitatively, thereby furnishing statistically exploitable data and allowing for an accurate and facilitated detection of subpopulations. It is, indeed, the summation of these facts that has established FCM as an important, and sometimes essential, tool for the understanding of fundamental mechanisms and processes underlying plant growth, development, and function. In this review, special attention is paid to FCM as applied to plant cells in the context of plant breeding, and some new and less well-known uses of it for plants will be discussed.

  11. Breeding bald eagles in captivity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Maestrelli, J.R.; Wiemeyer, Stanley N.

    1975-01-01

    A 7-year-old female Bald Eagle from Alabama was paired with a 4-year-old Alaskan male in a large flight pen during December 1969. Both birds were free of physical defects when originally placed in the pen but the female was blind in one eye prior to the 1973 breeding season.....Nesting first occurred during 1971 when at least two eggs were laid; all but one, which showed no sign of embryonic development after being incubated for 56 days, were broken by the adult birds. Two of three eggs laid in 1972 hatched. Both young died a few days after hatching following a period of inclement weather. Three eggs were laid and hatched during 1973. Antagonism between the nestlings was observed soon after hatching and may have been responsible for the unobserved death of one nestling, two days after the third young hatched. The two remaining young were raised by the adult birds and eventually left the nest 85 days after the first egg hatched. Incubation periods for the 1972-73 clutches averaged 35 days. No renesting attempts were made by the eagles during the 3.year period.

  12. Breeding season survival and breeding incidence of female Mottled Ducks on the upper Texas gulf coast

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rigby, Elizabeth A.; Haukos, David A.

    2012-01-01

    Previous Mottled Duck (Anas fulvigula) studies suggested that high female breeding season survival may be caused by low nesting effort, but few breeding season estimates of survival associated with nesting effort exist on the western Gulf Coast. Here, breeding season survival (N = 40) and breeding incidence (N = 39) were estimated for female Mottled Ducks on the upper Texas coast, 2006–2008. Females were fitted with backpack radio transmitters and visually relocated every 3–4 days. Weekly survival was estimated using the Known Fate procedure of program MARK with breeding incidence estimated as the annual proportion of females observed nesting or with broods. The top-ranked survival model included a body mass covariate and held weekly female survival constant across weeks and years (SW = 0.986, SE = 0.006). When compared to survival across the entire year estimated from previous band recovery and age ratio analysis, survival rate during the breeding season did not differ. Breeding incidence was well below 100% in all years and highly variable among years (15%–63%). Breeding season survival and breeding incidence were similar to estimates obtained with implant transmitters from the mid-coast of Texas. The greatest breeding incidence for both studies occurred when drought indices indicated average environmental moisture during the breeding season. The observed combination of low breeding incidence and high breeding season survival support the hypothesis of a trade-off between the ecological cost of nesting effort and survival for Mottled Duck females. Habitat cues that trigger nesting are unknown and should be investigated.

  13. Breeding behavior of immature mourning doves

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Irby, H.D.; Blankenship, L.H.

    1966-01-01

    Some immature mourning doves (Zenaidura mncroura) are capable of breeding in their first (calendar) year of life. The breeding activities of immatures observed in this study included calling, copulating, and nesting. Development of sexual structures such as cloacal papillae, oviduct openings, and gonads was also regarded as evidence of breeding potential. Immatures were identified principally by white-tipped wing coverts. Sexes were distinguished by behavioral characteristics. Males coo, perform flights, carry nest material, and attend nests during the day and females attend nests at night. Immatures were involved in at least ten nestings on two areas near Tucson, Arizona, in 1963. Five young fledged from these nests.

  14. Management and Breeding Soundness of Mature Bulls.

    PubMed

    Palmer, Colin W

    2016-07-01

    Mature bulls must be fed a balanced ration, vaccinated appropriately, and undergo a breeding soundness evaluation to ensure they meet what is required of a short, but intense breeding season. To be classified as a satisfactory potential breeder, minimum standards for physical soundness, scrotal circumference, sperm motility, and sperm morphology must be achieved using an accepted bull-breeding soundness evaluation format. Sperm production requires approximately 70 days. Heat and stress are the most common insults to spermatogenesis, causing an increase in morphologic abnormalities with obesity-associated scrotal fat accumulation being the most frequent cause of elevated testicular temperature in mature bulls.

  15. Book review: Oklahoma Breeding Bird Atlas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Peterjohn, Bruce G.

    2004-01-01

    The first North American breeding bird atlases were initiated during the 1970s. With atlases completed or ongoing in more than 40 U.S. states and most Canadian provinces, these projects are now familiar to professional ornithologists and amateur birders. This book provides the results of the Oklahoma Breeding Bird Atlas, the data for which were collected during 1997–2001. Its appearance less than 3 years after completing fieldwork is remarkable and everyone associated with its timely publication should be congratulated for their efforts.Review info: Oklahoma Breeding Bird Atlas. By Dan L. Reinking, 2004. ISBN: 0806136146, 528 pp.

  16. First charge breeding results at CARIBU EBIS

    SciTech Connect

    Kondrashev, S. Barcikowski, A. Dickerson, C. Ostroumov, P. N. Sharamentov, S. Vondrasek, R.; Pikin, A.

    2015-01-09

    The Electron Beam Ion Source (EBIS) developed to breed CARIBU radioactive beams at ATLAS is currently in the off-line commissioning stage. The beam commissioning is being performed using a low emittance surface ionization source producing singly-charged cesium ions. The primary goal of the off-line commissioning is the demonstration of high-efficiency charge breeding in the pulsed injection mode. An overview of the final design of the CARIBU EBIS charge breeder, the off-line commissioning installation and the first results on charge breeding of stable cesium ions are presented and discussed.

  17. Husbandry and enclosure influences on penguin behavior and conservation breeding.

    PubMed

    Marshall, Andrew R; Deere, Nicolas J; Little, Holly A; Snipp, Ross; Goulder, Jackie; Mayer-Clarke, Stacey

    2016-09-01

    Multi-zoo comparisons of animal welfare are rare, and yet vital for ensuring continued improvement of zoo enclosures and husbandry. Methods are not standardized for the development of zoo enclosures based on multiple indicators, and case study species are required. This study compares behavior and breeding success to various enclosure and husbandry parameters for the Humboldt penguin, Spheniscus humboldti, for the development of improved enclosure design. Behavioral sampling was completed at Flamingo Land over a period of 8 months. Further data on behavior, enclosure design, and breeding success were collected via questionnaires, visits to zoos, and literature review. Breeding success was primarily influenced by colony age and number of breeding pairs, suggesting an important social influence on reproduction. Across zoos, there was also significant variation in behavior. The proportion of time spent in water varied between zoos (2-23%) and was used as an indicator of physical activity and natural behavior. Regression models revealed that water-use was best predicted by total enclosure area per penguin, followed by land area, with some evidence for positive influence of pool surface area per penguin. Predominantly linear/curvilinear increases in our biological indicators with enclosure parameters suggest that optimal conditions for S. humboldti were not met among the selected zoos. We propose revised minimum conditions for S. humboldti enclosure design, which exceed those in the existing husbandry guidelines. We present a framework for the evaluation of zoo enclosures and suggest that a rigorous scientific protocol be established for the design of new enclosures, based on multivariate methods. Zoo Biol. 35:385-397, 2016. © Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Synthesizing time-evolving partially-coherent Schell-model sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Zandt, Noah R.; Hyde, Milo W.; Bose-Pillai, Santasri R.; Voelz, David G.; Xiao, Xifeng; Fiorino, Steven T.

    2017-03-01

    Time-evolving simulation of sources with partial spatial and temporal coherence is sometimes instructive or necessary to explain optical coherence effects. Yet, existing time-evolving synthesis techniques often require prohibitive amounts of computer memory. This paper discusses three methods for the synthesis of continuous or pulsed time-evolving sources with nearly arbitrary spatial and temporal coherence. One method greatly reduces computer memory requirements, making this type of synthesis more practical. The utility of all three methods is demonstrated via a modified form of Young's experiment. Numerical simulation and laboratory results for time-averaged irradiance are presented and compared with theory to validate the synthesis techniques.

  19. The ascent of cat breeds: genetic evaluations of breeds and worldwide random-bred populations.

    PubMed

    Lipinski, Monika J; Froenicke, Lutz; Baysac, Kathleen C; Billings, Nicholas C; Leutenegger, Christian M; Levy, Alon M; Longeri, Maria; Niini, Tirri; Ozpinar, Haydar; Slater, Margaret R; Pedersen, Niels C; Lyons, Leslie A

    2008-01-01

    The diaspora of the modern cat was traced with microsatellite markers from the presumed site of domestication to distant regions of the world. Genetic data were derived from over 1100 individuals, representing 17 random-bred populations from five continents and 22 breeds. The Mediterranean was reconfirmed to be the probable site of domestication. Genetic diversity has remained broad throughout the world, with distinct genetic clustering in the Mediterranean basin, Europe/America, Asia and Africa. However, Asian cats appeared to have separated early and expanded in relative isolation. Most breeds were derived from indigenous cats of their purported regions of origin. However, the Persian and Japanese bobtail were more aligned with European/American than with Mediterranean basin or Asian clusters. Three recently derived breeds were not distinct from their parental breeds of origin. Pure breeding was associated with a loss of genetic diversity; however, this loss did not correlate with breed popularity or age.

  20. JavaGenes: Evolving Graphs with Crossover

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Globus, Al; Atsatt, Sean; Lawton, John; Wipke, Todd

    2000-01-01

    Genetic algorithms usually use string or tree representations. We have developed a novel crossover operator for a directed and undirected graph representation, and used this operator to evolve molecules and circuits. Unlike strings or trees, a single point in the representation cannot divide every possible graph into two parts, because graphs may contain cycles. Thus, the crossover operator is non-trivial. A steady-state, tournament selection genetic algorithm code (JavaGenes) was written to implement and test the graph crossover operator. All runs were executed by cycle-scavagging on networked workstations using the Condor batch processing system. The JavaGenes code has evolved pharmaceutical drug molecules and simple digital circuits. Results to date suggest that JavaGenes can evolve moderate sized drug molecules and very small circuits in reasonable time. The algorithm has greater difficulty with somewhat larger circuits, suggesting that directed graphs (circuits) are more difficult to evolve than undirected graphs (molecules), although necessary differences in the crossover operator may also explain the results. In principle, JavaGenes should be able to evolve other graph-representable systems, such as transportation networks, metabolic pathways, and computer networks. However, large graphs evolve significantly slower than smaller graphs, presumably because the space-of-all-graphs explodes combinatorially with graph size. Since the representation strongly affects genetic algorithm performance, adding graphs to the evolutionary programmer's bag-of-tricks should be beneficial. Also, since graph evolution operates directly on the phenotype, the genotype-phenotype translation step, common in genetic algorithm work, is eliminated.

  1. Familiar neighbors enhance breeding success in birds.

    PubMed Central

    Beletsky, L D; Orians, G H

    1989-01-01

    We tested the hypothesis that long-term familiarity with neighbors is advantageous by determining whether male red-winged blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus) breeding adjacent to familiar neighbors have better reproductive success than other males. Using data gathered during a 10-yr study of breeding success, we found that males with familiar neighbors fledged, on average, significantly more offspring annually than males without familiar neighbors. We also found that the same males, breeding in different years on the same territories, had significantly larger harems in the years they had familiar neighbors. Improved reproductive success was due to the males' abilities to attract more females to nest in their territories. Alternative hypotheses to explain the positive relationship between familiar neighbors and breeding success were not supported by our data. Relatively high reproductive success for breeders with long-term neighbors may provide a basis for the evolution of cooperative behavior in this and other species. PMID:2813369

  2. Economic evaluation of genomic breeding programs.

    PubMed

    König, S; Simianer, H; Willam, A

    2009-01-01

    The objective of this study was to compare a conventional dairy cattle breeding program characterized by a progeny testing scheme with different scenarios of genomic breeding programs. The ultimate economic evaluation criterion was discounted profit reflecting discounted returns minus discounted costs per cow in a balanced breeding goal of production and functionality. A deterministic approach mainly based on the gene flow method and selection index calculations was used to model a conventional progeny testing program and different scenarios of genomic breeding programs. As a novel idea, the modeling of the genomic breeding program accounted for the proportion of farmers waiting for daughter records of genotyped young bulls before using them for artificial insemination. Technical and biological coefficients for modeling were chosen to correspond to a German breeding organization. The conventional breeding program for 50 test bulls per year within a population of 100,000 cows served as a base scenario. Scenarios of genomic breeding programs considered the variation of costs for genotyping, selection intensity of cow sires, proportion of farmers waiting for daughter records of genotyped young bulls, and different accuracies of genomic indices for bulls and cows. Given that the accuracies of genomic indices are greater than 0.70, a distinct economic advantage was found for all scenarios of genomic breeding programs up to factor 2.59, mainly due to the reduction in generation intervals. Costs for genotyping were negligible when focusing on a population-wide perspective and considering additional costs for herdbook registration, milk recording, or keeping of bulls, especially if there is no need for yearly recalculation of effects of single nucleotide polymorphisms. Genomic breeding programs generated a higher discounted profit than a conventional progeny testing program for all scenarios where at least 20% of the inseminations were done by genotyped young bulls without

  3. Analysis of breed effects on semen traits in light horse, warmblood, and draught horse breeds.

    PubMed

    Gottschalk, Maren; Sieme, Harald; Martinsson, Gunilla; Distl, Ottmar

    2016-05-01

    In the present study, systematic effects on semen quality traits were investigated in 381 stallions representing 22 breeds. All stallions were used for AI either at the Lower Saxon National Stud Celle or the North Rhine-Westphalian National Stud Warendorf. A total of 71,078 fresh semen reports of the years 2001 to 2014 were edited for analysis of gel-free volume, sperm concentration, total number of sperm, progressive motility, and total number of progressively motile sperm. Breed differences were studied for warmblood and light horse breeds of both national studs (model I) and for warmblood breeds and the draught horse breed Rhenish German Coldblood from the North Rhine-Westphalian National stud (model II) using mixed model procedures. The fixed effects of age class, year, and month of semen collection had significant influences on all semen traits in both analyses. A significant influence of the horse breed was found for all semen traits but gel-free volume in both statistical models. Comparing warmblood and light horse stallions of both national studs, we observed highest sperm concentrations, total numbers of sperm, and total numbers of progressively motile sperm in Anglo-Arabian stallions. The draught horse breed Rhenish German Coldblood had the highest least squares means for gel-free volume, whereas all other investigated semen traits were significantly lower in this breed compared to the warmblood stallions under study. The variance components among stallions within breeds were significant for all semen traits and accounted for 40% to 59% of the total variance. The between-breed-variance among stallions was not significant underlining the similar size of the random stallion effect in each of the horse breeds analyzed here. In conclusion, breed and stallion are accounting for a significant proportion of the variation in semen quality.

  4. Viability of the Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dunham, Kylee; Grand, James B.

    2016-10-11

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is tasked with setting objective and measurable criteria for delisting species or populations listed under the Endangered Species Act. Determining the acceptable threshold for extinction risk for any species or population is a challenging task, particularly when facing marked uncertainty. The Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders (Polysticta stelleri) was listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act in 1997 because of a perceived decline in abundance throughout their nesting range and geographic isolation from the Russian breeding population. Previous genetic studies and modeling efforts, however, suggest that there may be dispersal from the Russian breeding population. Additionally, evidence exists of population level nonbreeding events. Research was conducted to estimate population viability of the Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders, using both an open and closed model of population process for this threatened population. Projections under a closed population model suggest this population has a 100 percent probability of extinction within 42 years. Projections under an open population model suggest that with immigration there is no probability of permanent extinction. Because of random immigration process and nonbreeding behavior, however, it is likely that this population will continue to be present in low and highly variable numbers on the breeding grounds in Alaska. Monitoring the winter population, which includes both Russian and Alaskan breeding birds, may offer a more comprehensive indication of population viability.

  5. Prunus transcription factors: breeding perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Bianchi, Valmor J.; Rubio, Manuel; Trainotti, Livio; Verde, Ignazio; Bonghi, Claudio; Martínez-Gómez, Pedro

    2015-01-01

    Many plant processes depend on differential gene expression, which is generally controlled by complex proteins called transcription factors (TFs). In peach, 1533 TFs have been identified, accounting for about 5.5% of the 27,852 protein-coding genes. These TFs are the reference for the rest of the Prunus species. TF studies in Prunus have been performed on the gene expression analysis of different agronomic traits, including control of the flowering process, fruit quality, and biotic and abiotic stress resistance. These studies, using quantitative RT-PCR, have mainly been performed in peach, and to a lesser extent in other species, including almond, apricot, black cherry, Fuji cherry, Japanese apricot, plum, and sour and sweet cherry. Other tools have also been used in TF studies, including cDNA-AFLP, LC-ESI-MS, RNA, and DNA blotting or mapping. More recently, new tools assayed include microarray and high-throughput DNA sequencing (DNA-Seq) and RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq). New functional genomics opportunities include genome resequencing and the well-known synteny among Prunus genomes and transcriptomes. These new functional studies should be applied in breeding programs in the development of molecular markers. With the genome sequences available, some strategies that have been used in model systems (such as SNP genotyping assays and genotyping-by-sequencing) may be applicable in the functional analysis of Prunus TFs as well. In addition, the knowledge of the gene functions and position in the peach reference genome of the TFs represents an additional advantage. These facts could greatly facilitate the isolation of genes via QTL (quantitative trait loci) map-based cloning in the different Prunus species, following the association of these TFs with the identified QTLs using the peach reference genome. PMID:26124770

  6. [Pain caused by breeding: definition, judgment, pathogenesis].

    PubMed

    Herzog, A

    1997-02-01

    Special terms of the "German Animal Protection Law (section 11b)"and the "European Agreement for Protection of Domestic Animals" particularly "torture-breeding, genetic characteristics, well-being, soundness, pains, injuries and specific use" are commented. Examples of torture-breedings are discussed: Dog (Merle-faktor, brachycephalie, atrichosis), cat (Mans-factor, W-gene, folded-ears), birds (tuffs, ear-drops, tailesness, hypertrophy of bill-warts, abnormal position of tarsal-joints, hypertrophy of imposing behavior).

  7. Variable postpartum responsiveness among humans and other primates with "cooperative breeding": A comparative and evolutionary perspective.

    PubMed

    Hrdy, Sarah B

    2016-01-01

    This article is part of a Special Issue "Parental Care".Until recently, evolutionists reconstructing mother-infant bonding among human ancestors relied on nonhuman primate models characterized by exclusively maternal care, overlooking the highly variable responsiveness exhibited by mothers in species with obligate reliance on allomaternal care and provisioning. It is now increasingly recognized that apes as large-brained, slow maturing, and nutritionally dependent for so long as early humans were, could not have evolved unless "alloparents" (group members other than genetic parents), in addition to parents, had helped mothers to care for and provision offspring, a rearing system known as "cooperative breeding." Here I review situation-dependent maternal responses ranging from highly possessive to permissive, temporarily distancing, rejecting, or infanticidal, documented for a small subset of cooperatively breeding primates. As in many mammals, primate maternal responsiveness is influenced by physical condition, endocrinological priming, prior experience and local environments (especially related to security). But mothers among primates who evolved as cooperative breeders also appear unusually sensitive to cues of social support. In addition to more "sapient" or rational decision-making, humankind's deep history of cooperative breeding must be considered when trying to understand the extremely variable responsiveness of human mothers.

  8. Citrus breeding, genetics and genomics in Japan

    PubMed Central

    Omura, Mitsuo; Shimada, Takehiko

    2016-01-01

    Citrus is one of the most cultivated fruits in the world, and satsuma mandarin (Citrus unshiu Marc.) is a major cultivated citrus in Japan. Many excellent cultivars derived from satsuma mandarin have been released through the improvement of mandarins using a conventional breeding method. The citrus breeding program is a lengthy process owing to the long juvenility, and it is predicted that marker-assisted selection (MAS) will overcome the obstacle and improve the efficiency of conventional breeding methods. To promote citrus molecular breeding in Japan, a genetic mapping was initiated in 1987, and the experimental tools and resources necessary for citrus functional genomics have been developed in relation to the physiological analysis of satsuma mandarin. In this paper, we review the progress of citrus breeding and genome researches in Japan and report the studies on genetic mapping, expression sequence tag cataloguing, and molecular characterization of breeding characteristics, mainly in terms of the metabolism of bio-functional substances as well as factors relating to, for example, fruit quality, disease resistance, polyembryony, and flowering. PMID:27069387

  9. Lysine Fermentation: History and Genome Breeding.

    PubMed

    Ikeda, Masato

    2016-11-11

    Lysine fermentation by Corynebacterium glutamicum was developed in 1958 by Kyowa Hakko Kogyo Co. Ltd. (current Kyowa Hakko Bio Co. Ltd.) and is the second oldest amino acid fermentation process after glutamate fermentation. The fundamental mechanism of lysine production, discovered in the early stages of the process's history, gave birth to the concept known as "metabolic regulatory fermentation," which is now widely applied to metabolite production. After the development of rational metabolic engineering, research on lysine production first highlighted the need for engineering of the central metabolism from the viewpoints of precursor supply and NADPH regeneration. Furthermore, the existence of active export systems for amino acids was first demonstrated for lysine in C. glutamicum, and this discovery has resulted in the current recognition of such exporters as an important consideration in metabolite production. Lysine fermentation is also notable as the first process to which genomics was successfully applied to improve amino acid production. The first global "genome breeding" strategy was developed using a lysine producer as a model; this has since led to new lysine producers that are more efficient than classical industrial producers. These advances in strain development technology, combined with recent systems-level approaches, have almost achieved the optimization of entire cellular systems as cell factories for lysine production. In parallel, the continuous improvement of the process has resulted not only in fermentation processes with reduced load on downstream processing but also in commercialization of various product forms according to their intended uses. Nowadays lysine fermentation underpins a giant lysine demand of more than 2 million metric tons per year.

  10. Surveying The Digital Landscape: Evolving Technologies 2004. The EDUCAUSE Evolving Technologies Committee

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    EDUCAUSE Review, 2004

    2004-01-01

    Each year, the members of the EDUCAUSE Evolving Technologies Committee identify and research the evolving technologies that are having the most direct impact on higher education institutions. The committee members choose the relevant topics, write white papers, and present their findings at the EDUCAUSE annual conference. This year, under the…

  11. Carry-over body mass effect from winter to breeding in a resident seabird, the little penguin

    PubMed Central

    Salton, Marcus; Saraux, Claire; Dann, Peter; Chiaradia, André

    2015-01-01

    Using body mass and breeding data of individual penguins collected continuously over 7 years (2002–2008), we examined carry-over effects of winter body mass on timing of laying and breeding success in a resident seabird, the little penguin (Eudyptula minor). The austral winter month of July consistently had the lowest rate of colony attendance, which confirmed our expectation that penguins work hard to find resources at this time between breeding seasons. Contrary to our expectation, body mass in winter (July) was equal or higher than in the period before (‘moult-recovery’) and after (‘pre-breeding’) in 5 of 7 years for males and in all 7 years for females. We provided evidence of a carry-over effect of body mass from winter to breeding; females and males with higher body mass in winter were more likely to breed early and males with higher body mass in winter were likely to breed successfully. Sex differences might relate to sex-specific breeding tasks, where females may use their winter reserves to invest in egg-laying, whereas males use their winter reserves to sustain the longer fasts ashore during courtship. Our findings suggest that resident seabirds like little penguins can also benefit from a carry-over effect of winter body mass on subsequent breeding. PMID:26064587

  12. Interspecific reciprocity explains mobbing behaviour of the breeding chaffinches, Fringilla coelebs.

    PubMed Central

    Krams, Indrikis; Krama, Tatjana

    2002-01-01

    When prey animals discover a predator close by, they mob it while uttering characteristic sounds that attract other prey individuals to the vicinity. Mobbing causes a predator to vacate its immediate foraging area, which gives an opportunity for prey individuals to continue their interrupted daily activity. Besides the increased benefits, mobbing behaviour also has its costs owing to injuries or death. The initiator of mobbing may be at increased risk of predation by attracting the predator's attention, especially if not joined by other neighbouring prey individuals. Communities of breeding birds have always been considered as temporal aggregations. Since an altruist could not prevent cheaters from exploiting its altruism in an anonymous community, this excluded any possibility of explaining mobbing behaviour in terms of reciprocal altruism. However, sedentary birds may have become acquainted since the previous non-breeding season. Migrant birds, forming anonymous communities at the beginning of the breeding season, may also develop closer social ties during the course of the breeding season. We tested whether a male chaffinch, a migrant bird, would initiate active harassment of a predator both at the beginning of the breeding season and a week later when it has become a member of a non-anonymous multi-species aggregation of sedentary birds. We expected that male chaffinches would be less likely to initiate a mob at the beginning of the breeding season when part of an anonymous multi-species aggregation of migratory birds. However, their mobbing activity should increase as the breeding season advances. Our results support these predictions. Cooperation among individuals belonging to different species in driving the predator away may be explained as interspecific reciprocity based on interspecific recognition and temporal stability of the breeding communities. PMID:12495502

  13. Interspecific reciprocity explains mobbing behaviour of the breeding chaffinches, Fringilla coelebs.

    PubMed

    Krams, Indrikis; Krama, Tatjana

    2002-11-22

    When prey animals discover a predator close by, they mob it while uttering characteristic sounds that attract other prey individuals to the vicinity. Mobbing causes a predator to vacate its immediate foraging area, which gives an opportunity for prey individuals to continue their interrupted daily activity. Besides the increased benefits, mobbing behaviour also has its costs owing to injuries or death. The initiator of mobbing may be at increased risk of predation by attracting the predator's attention, especially if not joined by other neighbouring prey individuals. Communities of breeding birds have always been considered as temporal aggregations. Since an altruist could not prevent cheaters from exploiting its altruism in an anonymous community, this excluded any possibility of explaining mobbing behaviour in terms of reciprocal altruism. However, sedentary birds may have become acquainted since the previous non-breeding season. Migrant birds, forming anonymous communities at the beginning of the breeding season, may also develop closer social ties during the course of the breeding season. We tested whether a male chaffinch, a migrant bird, would initiate active harassment of a predator both at the beginning of the breeding season and a week later when it has become a member of a non-anonymous multi-species aggregation of sedentary birds. We expected that male chaffinches would be less likely to initiate a mob at the beginning of the breeding season when part of an anonymous multi-species aggregation of migratory birds. However, their mobbing activity should increase as the breeding season advances. Our results support these predictions. Cooperation among individuals belonging to different species in driving the predator away may be explained as interspecific reciprocity based on interspecific recognition and temporal stability of the breeding communities.

  14. 50 CFR 15.24 - Permits for cooperative breeding.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Permits for cooperative breeding. 15.24... PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15.24 Permits for cooperative breeding. (a) Application requirements for permits for cooperative breeding....

  15. 50 CFR 15.24 - Permits for cooperative breeding.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Permits for cooperative breeding. 15.24... PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15.24 Permits for cooperative breeding. (a) Application requirements for permits for cooperative breeding....

  16. 50 CFR 15.24 - Permits for cooperative breeding.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Permits for cooperative breeding. 15.24... PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15.24 Permits for cooperative breeding. (a) Application requirements for permits for cooperative breeding....

  17. 50 CFR 15.24 - Permits for cooperative breeding.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Permits for cooperative breeding. 15.24... PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15.24 Permits for cooperative breeding. (a) Application requirements for permits for cooperative breeding....

  18. Thermal and Evolved-Gas Analyzer Illustration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    This is a computer-aided drawing of the Thermal and Evolved-Gas Analyzer, or TEGA, on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander.

    The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

  19. Evolving Neural Networks for Nonlinear Control.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1996-09-30

    An approach to creating Amorphous Recurrent Neural Networks (ARNN) using Genetic Algorithms (GA) called 2pGA has been developed and shown to be...effective in evolving neural networks for the control and stabilization of both linear and nonlinear plants, the optimal control for a nonlinear regulator

  20. The Evolving Leadership Path of Visual Analytics

    SciTech Connect

    Kluse, Michael; Peurrung, Anthony J.; Gracio, Deborah K.

    2012-01-02

    This is a requested book chapter for an internationally authored book on visual analytics and related fields, coordianted by a UK university and to be published by Springer in 2012. This chapter is an overview of the leadship strategies that PNNL's Jim Thomas and other stakeholders used to establish visual analytics as a field, and how those strategies may evolve in the future.

  1. Did Language Evolve Like the Vertebrate Eye?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Botha, Rudolf P.

    2002-01-01

    Offers a critical appraisal of the way in which the idea that human language or some of its features evolved like the vertebrate eye by natural selection is articulated in Pinker and Bloom's (1990) selectionist account of language evolution. Argues that this account is less than insightful because it fails to draw some of the conceptual…

  2. Apollo 16 Evolved Lithology Sodic Ferrogabbro

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeigler, Ryan; Jolliff, B. L.; Korotev, R. L.

    2014-01-01

    Evolved lunar igneous lithologies, often referred to as the alkali suite, are a minor but important component of the lunar crust. These evolved samples are incompatible-element rich samples, and are, not surprisingly, most common in the Apollo sites in (or near) the incompatible-element rich region of the Moon known as the Procellarum KREEP Terrane (PKT). The most commonly occurring lithologies are granites (A12, A14, A15, A17), monzogabbro (A14, A15), alkali anorthosites (A12, A14), and KREEP basalts (A15, A17). The Feldspathic Highlands Terrane is not entirely devoid of evolved lithologies, and rare clasts of alkali gabbronorite and sodic ferrogabbro (SFG) have been identified in Apollo 16 station 11 breccias 67915 and 67016. Curiously, nearly all pristine evolved lithologies have been found as small clasts or soil particles, exceptions being KREEP basalts 15382/6 and granitic sample 12013 (which is itself a breccia). Here we reexamine the petrography and geochemistry of two SFG-like particles found in a survey of Apollo 16 2-4 mm particles from the Cayley Plains 62283,7-15 and 62243,10-3 (hereafter 7-15 and 10-3 respectively). We will compare these to previously reported SFG samples, including recent analyses on the type specimen of SFG from lunar breccia 67915.

  3. Historical use of cultivars as parents in Florida and Louisiana sugarcane breeding program

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sugarcane (Saccharum L. spp. hybrids) growers depend on breeding programs for new, high-yielding cultivars that have resistance to abiotic and biotic stresses, so breeders continually seek out widely adapted, high yielding germplasm to be used as parents for their programs. Cultivars are sometimes u...

  4. Life History Correlates and Extinction Risk of Capital-Breeding Fishes

    SciTech Connect

    Jager, Yetta; Vila-Gispert, Dr Anna; Rose, Kenneth A.

    2008-03-01

    We consider a distinction for fishes, often made for birds and reptiles, between capital-breeding and income-breeding species. Species that follow a capital-breeding strategy tend to evolve longer intervals between reproductive events and tend to have characteristics that we associate with higher extinction risk. To examine whether these ideas are relevant for fishes, we assembled life-history data for fish species, including an index of extinction risk, the interval between spawning events, the degree of parental care, and whether or not the species migrates to spawn. These data were used to evaluate two hypotheses: 1) fish species with a major accessory activity to spawning (migration or parental care) spawn less often and 2) fish species that spawn less often are at greater risk of extinction. We tested these hypotheses by applying two alternative statistical methods that account for phylogenetic correlation in cross-taxon comparisons. The two methods predicted average intervals between spawning events 0.13 to 0.20 years longer for fishes with a major accessory activity. Both accessories, above-average parental care and spawning migration, were individually associated with longer average spawning intervals. We conclude that the capital-breeding paradigm is relevant for fishes. We also confirmed the second hypothesis, that species in higher IUCN extinction risk categories had longer average spawning intervals. Further research is needed to understand the relationship between extinction risk and spawning interval, within the broader context of life history traits and aquatic habitats.

  5. Eleven years of breeding efforts to combat cassava brown streak disease

    PubMed Central

    Kawuki, Robert Sezi; Kaweesi, Tadeo; Esuma, Williams; Pariyo, Anthony; Kayondo, Ismail Siraj; Ozimati, Alfred; Kyaligonza, Vincent; Abaca, Alex; Orone, Joseph; Tumuhimbise, Robooni; Nuwamanya, Ephraim; Abidrabo, Philip; Amuge, Teddy; Ogwok, Emmanuel; Okao, Geoffrey; Wagaba, Henry; Adiga, Gerald; Alicai, Titus; Omongo, Christopher; Bua, Anton; Ferguson, Morag; Kanju, Edward; Baguma, Yona

    2016-01-01

    Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) production is currently under threat from cassava brown streak disease (CBSD), a disease that is among the seven most serious obstacles to world’s food security. Three issues are of significance for CBSD. Firstly, the virus associated with CBSD, has co-evolved with cassava outside its center of origin for at least 90 years. Secondly, that for the last 74 years, CBSD was only limited to the low lands. Thirdly, that most research has largely focused on CBSD epidemiology and virus diversity. Accordingly, this paper focuses on CBSD genetics and/or breeding and hence, presents empirical data generated in the past 11 years of cassava breeding in Uganda. Specifically, this paper provides: 1) empirical data on CBSD resistance screening efforts to identify sources of resistance and/or tolerance; 2) an update on CBSD resistance population development comprising of full-sibs, half-sibs and S1 families and their respective field performances; and 3) insights into chromosomal regions and genes involved in CBSD resistance based on genome wide association analysis. It is expected that this information will provide a foundation for harmonizing on-going CBSD breeding efforts and consequently, inform the future breeding interventions aimed at combating CBSD. PMID:27795681

  6. Captive breeding and reintroduction of the endangered masked bobwhite

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Carpenter, J.W.; Gabel, R.R.; Goodwin, J.G.

    1991-01-01

    Efforts to restore the endangered masked bobwhite (Colinus virginianus ridgwayi) to its former range have required 1) habitat acquisition, restoration, and preservation; 2) captive propagation; and 3) reintroduction .bf captive-bred stock. In its role to recover the masked bobwhite, the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center (U.S. Fish and Wildli e Service) has refined captive breeding techniques; provided captive-produced stock for release; conducted field research on the distribution, limiting factors, and habitat characteristics of this species; and developed release methods. Techniques for the husbandry and captive management, breeding, artificial incubation and hatching of eggs, and rearing of young of the masked bobwhite have been developed. Successful reintroduction techniques for the masked bobwhite have included prerelease conditioning and/or cross-fostering of captive-reared masked bobwhite chicks to a wild-caught, related, vasectomized bobwhite species and their release to the wild as family units. In addition, the establishment by the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service of the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge in 1985 has further enhanced the potential for establishing a self-sustaining population of the masked bobwhite in the U. S. Through continued releases and active management of habitat, therefore, it is believed that the masked bobwhite can become permanently established at the refuge to ensure its continued survival in the wild.

  7. Cognitive consequences of cooperative breeding in primates?

    PubMed

    Burkart, Judith Maria; van Schaik, Carel P

    2010-01-01

    Several hypotheses propose that cooperative breeding leads to increased cognitive performance, in both nonhuman and human primates, but systematic evidence for such a relationship is missing. A causal link might exist because motivational and cognitive processes necessary for the execution and coordination of helping behaviors could also favor cognitive performance in contexts not directly related to caregiving. In callitrichids, which among primates rely most strongly on cooperative breeding, these motivational and cognitive processes include attentional biases toward monitoring others, the ability to coordinate actions spatially and temporally, increased social tolerance, increased responsiveness to others' signals, and spontaneous prosociality. These processes are likely to enhance performance particularly in socio-cognitive contexts. Therefore, cooperatively breeding primates are expected to outperform their independently breeding sister taxa in socio-cognitive tasks. We evaluate this prediction by reviewing the literature and comparing cognitive performance in callitrichids with that of their sister taxa, i.e. squirrel monkeys, which are independent breeders, and capuchin monkeys, which show an intermediate breeding system. Consistent with our prediction, this review reveals that callitrichids systematically and significantly outperform their sister taxa in the socio-cognitive, but not in the non-social domain. This comparison is complemented with more qualitative evaluations of prosociality and cognitive performance in non-primate cooperative breeders, which suggest that among mammals, cooperative breeding generally produces conditions conducive to socio-cognitive performance. In the hominid lineage, however, the adoption of extensive allomaternal care presumably resulted in more pervasive cognitive consequences, because the motivational consequences of cooperative breeding was added to an ape-level cognitive system already capable of understanding simple

  8. Across-breed EPD tables for the year 2016 adjusted to breed differences for birth year of 2014

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Records of progeny of 18 breeds were used to estimate differences among the breeds for birth, weaning, and yearling weight and for maternal effects of weaning weight, among 15 of the 18 breeds for carcass marbling and ribeye area and among 14 of the 18 breeds for fat depth and carcass weight. The r...

  9. Can Fusion and Fission Breeding Help Civilization Survive?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manheiemr, Wallace

    2006-12-01

    As apparent from the title, this author feels that civilization faces a real threat, one which will become obvious and serious within the lifetimes of many readers of this article. This threat is not global warming, but lack of affordable energy. We take for granted turning on a light, or adjusting our thermostats in winter or summer, or filling our cars gas tank; and lose sight of the fact that there are huge and complicated industrial systems which make this possible. But as we run out of petroleum and natural gas, and worry about the environmental and climatic effects of burning coal on the required scale, how can this continue? This paper makes the case that breeding nuclear fuel, by both fusion and fission, is the only way our civilization as we know it, can continue beyond the next half century or so.

  10. Breeding programmes for smallholder sheep farming systems: II. Optimization of cooperative village breeding schemes.

    PubMed

    Gizaw, S; van Arendonk, J A M; Valle-Zárate, A; Haile, A; Rischkowsky, B; Dessie, T; Mwai, A O

    2014-10-01

    A simulation study was conducted to optimize a cooperative village-based sheep breeding scheme for Menz sheep of Ethiopia. Genetic gains and profits were estimated under nine levels of farmers' participation and three scenarios of controlled breeding achieved in the breeding programme, as well as under three cooperative flock sizes, ewe to ram mating ratios and durations of ram use for breeding. Under fully controlled breeding, that is, when there is no gene flow between participating (P) and non-participating (NP) flocks, profits ranged from Birr 36.9 at 90% of participation to Birr 21.3 at 10% of participation. However, genetic progress was not affected adversely. When there was gene flow from the NP to P flocks, profits declined from Birr 28.6 to Birr -3.7 as participation declined from 90 to 10%. Under the two-way gene flow model (i.e. when P and NP flocks are herded mixed in communal grazing areas), NP flocks benefited from the genetic gain achieved in the P flocks, but the benefits declined sharply when participation declined beyond 60%. Our results indicate that a cooperative breeding group can be established with as low as 600 breeding ewes mated at a ratio of 45 ewes to one ram, and the rams being used for breeding for a period of two years. This study showed that farmer cooperation is crucial to effect genetic improvement under smallholder low-input sheep farming systems.

  11. Laboratory breeding of the short-lived annual killifish Nothobranchius furzeri.

    PubMed

    Polačik, Matej; Blažek, Radim; Reichard, Martin

    2016-08-01

    Turquoise killifish, Nothobranchius furzeri, have an intrinsically short life span, with a median life span of <6 months and a maximum (90%) life span of 9 months. This short life span, which is unique among vertebrates, evolved naturally and has resulted in N. furzeri becoming a widely used laboratory model species in aging research and other disciplines. Here, we describe a protocol for the maintenance and breeding of the species under laboratory conditions. We provide details for egg incubation, hatching, everyday care of juvenile and adult fish, breeding and treatment of most common diseases. Emphasis is given to the fact that the requirements of N. furzeri substantially differ from those of other fish model taxa; N. furzeri live brief lives and in nature undergo nonaquatic embryo development, with consequences for their laboratory culture.

  12. The Sub-Annual Breeding Cycle of a Tropical Seabird

    PubMed Central

    Reynolds, S. James; Martin, Graham R.; Dawson, Alistair; Wearn, Colin P.; Hughes, B. John

    2014-01-01

    Breeding periodicity allows organisms to synchronise breeding attempts with the most favourable ecological conditions under which to raise offspring. For most animal species, ecological conditions vary seasonally and usually impose an annual breeding schedule on their populations; sub-annual breeding schedules will be rare. We use a 16-year dataset of breeding attempts by a tropical seabird, the sooty tern (Onychoprion fuscatus), on Ascension Island to provide new insights about this classical example of a population of sub-annually breeding birds that was first documented in studies 60 years previously on the same island. We confirm that the breeding interval of this population has remained consistently sub-annual. By ringing >17000 birds and re-capturing a large sample of them at equivalent breeding stages in subsequent seasons, we reveal for the first time that many individual birds also consistently breed sub-annually (i.e. that sub-annual breeding is an individual as well as a population breeding strategy). Ascension Island sooty terns appear to reduce their courtship phase markedly compared with conspecifics breeding elsewhere. Our results provide rare insights into the ecological and physiological drivers of breeding periodicity, indicating that reduction of the annual cycle to just two life-history stages, breeding and moult, is a viable life-history strategy and that moult may determine the minimum time between breeding attempts. PMID:24714514

  13. The sub-annual breeding cycle of a tropical seabird.

    PubMed

    Reynolds, S James; Martin, Graham R; Dawson, Alistair; Wearn, Colin P; Hughes, B John

    2014-01-01

    Breeding periodicity allows organisms to synchronise breeding attempts with the most favourable ecological conditions under which to raise offspring. For most animal species, ecological conditions vary seasonally and usually impose an annual breeding schedule on their populations; sub-annual breeding schedules will be rare. We use a 16-year dataset of breeding attempts by a tropical seabird, the sooty tern (Onychoprion fuscatus), on Ascension Island to provide new insights about this classical example of a population of sub-annually breeding birds that was first documented in studies 60 years previously on the same island. We confirm that the breeding interval of this population has remained consistently sub-annual. By ringing >17,000 birds and re-capturing a large sample of them at equivalent breeding stages in subsequent seasons, we reveal for the first time that many individual birds also consistently breed sub-annually (i.e. that sub-annual breeding is an individual as well as a population breeding strategy). Ascension Island sooty terns appear to reduce their courtship phase markedly compared with conspecifics breeding elsewhere. Our results provide rare insights into the ecological and physiological drivers of breeding periodicity, indicating that reduction of the annual cycle to just two life-history stages, breeding and moult, is a viable life-history strategy and that moult may determine the minimum time between breeding attempts.

  14. Competitive Advantage and its Sources in an Evolving Market

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaridis, Apostolos D.

    2009-08-01

    In a continuously altered and evolving Market, as is the food manufacturing market, the main and long-lasting objective of firm that is the maximization of its wealth and consequently the continuous remaining in profit regions, appears that it is possible to be achieved via the obtainment and maintenance of diachronically long-term competitive advantage, which it will render the firm unique or leader force in a inexorable competition that is continuously extended in a globalized market. Various definitions and different regards are developed in regard to the competitive advantage and the way with which a firm it is possible, acquiring it, to star in the market in which it is activated. As result of sustainable competitive advantage in a firm comes the above the average performance. Abundance of resources and competences that are proposed as sources of competitive advantage in the resource-based view literature exists, while they are added continuously new based on empiric studies. In any case, it appears to suffer hierarchy of sources of competitive advantage, with regard to sustainability of these.

  15. Evolved gas analysis of secondary organic aerosols

    SciTech Connect

    Grosjean, D.; Williams, E.L. II; Grosjean, E. ); Novakov, T. )

    1994-11-01

    Secondary organic aerosols have been characterized by evolved gas analysis (EGA). Hydrocarbons selected as aerosol precursors were representative of anthropogenic emissions (cyclohexene, cyclopentene, 1-decene and 1-dodecene, n-dodecane, o-xylene, and 1,3,5-trimethylbenzene) and of biogenic emissions (the terpenes [alpha]-pinene, [beta]-pinene and d-limonene and the sesquiterpene trans-caryophyllene). Also analyzed by EGA were samples of secondary, primary (highway tunnel), and ambient (urban) aerosols before and after exposure to ozone and other photochemical oxidants. The major features of the EGA thermograms (amount of CO[sub 2] evolved as a function of temperature) are described. The usefulness and limitations of EGA data for source apportionment of atmospheric particulate carbon are briefly discussed. 28 refs., 7 figs., 4 tabs.

  16. Dust obscuration by an evolving galaxy population

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Najita, Joan; Silk, Joseph; Wachter, Kenneth W.

    1990-01-01

    The effect of an evolving luminosity function (LF) on the ability of foreground galaxies to obscure background sources is discussed, using the Press-Schechter/CDM standard evolving LF model. Galaxies are modeled as simplified versions of local spirals and Poisson statistics are used to estimate the fraction of sky covered by intervening dusty galaxies and the mean optical depths due to these galaxies. The results are compared to those obtained in the case of nonevolving luminosity function in a low-density universe. It is found that evolution of the galaxy LF does not allow the quasar dust obscuration hypothesis to be sustained for dust disks with plausible sizes. Even in a low-density universe, where evolution at z = less than 10 is unimportant, large disk radii are needed to achieve the desired obscuring effect. The mean fraction of sky covered is presented as a function of the redshift z along with adequate diagram illustrations.

  17. Design Space Issues for Intrinsic Evolvable Hardware

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hereford, James; Gwaltney, David

    2004-01-01

    This paper discusses the problem of increased programming time for intrinsic evolvable hardware (EM) as the complexity of the circuit grows. As the circuit becomes more complex, then more components will be required and a longer programming string, L, is required. We develop equations for the size of the population, n, and the number of generations required for the population to converge, based on L. Our analytical results show that even though the design search space grows as 2L (assuming a binary programming string), the number of circuit evaluations, n*ngen, only grows as O(Lg3), or slightly less than O(L). This makes evolvable techniques a good tool for exploring large design spaces. The major hurdle for intrinsic EHW is evaluation time for each possible circuit. The evaluation time involves downloading the bit string to the device, updating the device configuration, measuring the output and then transferring the output data to the control processor. Each of these steps must be done for each member of the population. The processing time of the computer becomes negligible since the selection/crossover/mutation steps are only done once per generation. Evaluation time presently limits intrinsic evolvable hardware techniques to designing only small or medium-sized circuits. To evolve large or complicated circuits, several researchers have proposed using hierarchical design or reuse techniques where submodules are combined together to form complex circuits. However, these practical approaches limit the search space of available designs and preclude utilizing parasitic coupling or other effects within the programmable device. The practical approaches also raise the issue of why intrinsic EHW techniques do not easily apply to large design spaces, since the analytical results show only an O(L) complexity growth.

  18. Quantum games on evolving random networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pawela, Łukasz

    2016-09-01

    We study the advantages of quantum strategies in evolutionary social dilemmas on evolving random networks. We focus our study on the two-player games: prisoner's dilemma, snowdrift and stag-hunt games. The obtained result show the benefits of quantum strategies for the prisoner's dilemma game. For the other two games, we obtain regions of parameters where the quantum strategies dominate, as well as regions where the classical strategies coexist.

  19. Improving the breed - Shuttle development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brand, V.

    1985-01-01

    An evaluation is made of design improvements that have been made to the Space Shuttle System, and the performance gains obtained; the most important of these stem from efforts to refine procedures for rendezvous with stricken satellites, in order to repair them. Ascent performance has been improved through Space Shuttle Main Engine thrust improvements and external tank weight reductions. On-orbit living convenience has been enhanced by the addition of small sleeping compartments and a galley. Greater flexibility has been obtained for reentry and landing maneuvers. Attention is given to problems which continue to be posed by the thermal protection tiles.

  20. Transistor Level Circuit Experiments using Evolvable Hardware

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stoica, A.; Zebulum, R. S.; Keymeulen, D.; Ferguson, M. I.; Daud, Taher; Thakoor, A.

    2005-01-01

    The Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) performs research in fault tolerant, long life, and space survivable electronics for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). With that focus, JPL has been involved in Evolvable Hardware (EHW) technology research for the past several years. We have advanced the technology not only by simulation and evolution experiments, but also by designing, fabricating, and evolving a variety of transistor-based analog and digital circuits at the chip level. EHW refers to self-configuration of electronic hardware by evolutionary/genetic search mechanisms, thereby maintaining existing functionality in the presence of degradations due to aging, temperature, and radiation. In addition, EHW has the capability to reconfigure itself for new functionality when required for mission changes or encountered opportunities. Evolution experiments are performed using a genetic algorithm running on a DSP as the reconfiguration mechanism and controlling the evolvable hardware mounted on a self-contained circuit board. Rapid reconfiguration allows convergence to circuit solutions in the order of seconds. The paper illustrates hardware evolution results of electronic circuits and their ability to perform under 230 C temperature as well as radiations of up to 250 kRad.

  1. Evolving specialization of the arthropod nervous system.

    PubMed

    Jarvis, Erin; Bruce, Heather S; Patel, Nipam H

    2012-06-26

    The diverse array of body plans possessed by arthropods is created by generating variations upon a design of repeated segments formed during development, using a relatively small "toolbox" of conserved patterning genes. These attributes make the arthropod body plan a valuable model for elucidating how changes in development create diversity of form. As increasingly specialized segments and appendages evolved in arthropods, the nervous systems of these animals also evolved to control the function of these structures. Although there is a remarkable degree of conservation in neural development both between individual segments in any given species and between the nervous systems of different arthropod groups, the differences that do exist are informative for inferring general principles about the holistic evolution of body plans. This review describes developmental processes controlling neural segmentation and regionalization, highlighting segmentation mechanisms that create both ectodermal and neural segments, as well as recent studies of the role of Hox genes in generating regional specification within the central nervous system. We argue that this system generates a modular design that allows the nervous system to evolve in concert with the body segments and their associated appendages. This information will be useful in future studies of macroevolutionary changes in arthropod body plans, especially in understanding how these transformations can be made in a way that retains the function of appendages during evolutionary transitions in morphology.

  2. Breeding and genetics--historical perspective.

    PubMed

    Rishell, W A

    1997-08-01

    This paper is a review of selection methods that have been used in commercial breeding of table egg stocks, broilers, and turkeys, based on the author's experience. In addition, a number of historic developments that have shaped or influenced the selection process are listed and the significance of each is discussed. The merits of mass selection are noted and compared with the multiple forms of family selection, e.g., full or half sibs, progeny testing, and recurrent methods. Each of these methods is believed to have nearly universal application in applied breeding programs being practiced today. This review concludes that a combination of individual and family selection practices aimed at improving multiple traits simultaneously is required to remain a successful supplier of breeding stock to the current commercial industry.

  3. Genetic stability in the Icelandic horse breed.

    PubMed

    Campana, M G; Stock, F; Barrett, E; Benecke, N; Barker, G W W; Seetah, K; Bower, M A

    2012-08-01

    Despite the Icelandic horse enjoying great popularity worldwide, the breed's gene pool is small. This is because of a millennium of isolation on Iceland, population crashes caused by natural disasters and selective breeding. Populations with small effective population sizes are considered to be more at risk of selection pressures such as disease and environmental change. By analysing historic and modern mitochondrial DNA sequences and nuclear coat colour genes, we examined real-time population dynamics in the Icelandic horse over the last 150 years. Despite the small gene pool of this breed, we found that the effective population size and genetic profile of the Icelandic horse have remained stable over the studied time period.

  4. Haploids: Constraints and opportunities in plant breeding.

    PubMed

    Dwivedi, Sangam L; Britt, Anne B; Tripathi, Leena; Sharma, Shivali; Upadhyaya, Hari D; Ortiz, Rodomiro

    2015-11-01

    The discovery of haploids in higher plants led to the use of doubled haploid (DH) technology in plant breeding. This article provides the state of the art on DH technology including the induction and identification of haploids, what factors influence haploid induction, molecular basis of microspore embryogenesis, the genetics underpinnings of haploid induction and its use in plant breeding, particularly to fix traits and unlock genetic variation. Both in vitro and in vivo methods have been used to induce haploids that are thereafter chromosome doubled to produce DH. Various heritable factors contribute to the successful induction of haploids, whose genetics is that of a quantitative trait. Genomic regions associated with in vitro and in vivo DH production were noted in various crops with the aid of DNA markers. It seems that F2 plants are the most suitable for the induction of DH lines than F1 plants. Identifying putative haploids is a key issue in haploid breeding. DH technology in Brassicas and cereals, such as barley, maize, rice, rye and wheat, has been improved and used routinely in cultivar development, while in other food staples such as pulses and root crops the technology has not reached to the stage leading to its application in plant breeding. The centromere-mediated haploid induction system has been used in Arabidopsis, but not yet in crops. Most food staples are derived from genomic resources-rich crops, including those with sequenced reference genomes. The integration of genomic resources with DH technology provides new opportunities for the improving selection methods, maximizing selection gains and accelerate cultivar development. Marker-aided breeding and DH technology have been used to improve host plant resistance in barley, rice, and wheat. Multinational seed companies are using DH technology in large-scale production of inbred lines for further development of hybrid cultivars, particularly in maize. The public sector provides support to

  5. Evolving Multi Rover Systems in Dynamic and Noisy Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tumer, Kagan; Agogino, Adrian

    2005-01-01

    In this chapter, we address how to evolve control strategies for a collective: a set of entities that collectively strives to maximize a global evaluation function that rates the performance of the full system. Addressing such problems by directly applying a global evolutionary algorithm to a population of collectives is unworkable because the search space is prohibitively large. Instead, we focus on evolving control policies for each member of the collective, where each member is trying to maximize the fitness of its own population. The main difficulty with this approach is creating fitness evaluation functions for the members of the collective that induce the collective to achieve high performance with respect to the system level goal. To overcome this difficulty, we derive member evaluation functions that are both aligned with the global evaluation function (ensuring that members trying to achieve high fitness results in a collective with high fitness) and sensitive to the fitness of each member (a member's fitness depends more on its own actions than on actions of other members). In a difficult rover coordination problem in dynamic and noisy environments, we show how to construct evaluation functions that lead to good collective behavior. The control policy evolved using aligned and member-sensitive evaluations outperforms global evaluation methods by up to a factor of four. in addition we show that the collective continues to perform well in the presence of high noise levels and when the environment is highly dynamic. More notably, in the presence of a larger number of rovers or rovers with noisy sensors, the improvements due to the proposed method become significantly more pronounced.

  6. Breeding Astyanax mexicanus through Natural Spawning.

    PubMed

    Borowsky, Richard

    2008-11-01

    INTRODUCTIONMale and female Astyanax mexicanus can be bred successfully in tanks under appropriate conditions. Females should be maintained on a diet high in fats for 10-14 d before breeding. The transfer of a male and female into clean water in a fresh tank and a change (increase) in water temperature are cues for breeding. Newly fertilized eggs may also be obtained through in vitro fertilization. Note that blind fish should never be paired with eyed fish in illuminated aquaria, because the eyed fish are aggressive and will kill even much larger blind fish. Such matings must be carried out in the dark or by using in vitro fertilization.

  7. Age-specific breeding in Emperor Geese

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schmutz, J.A.

    2000-01-01

    I studied the frequency with which Emperor Geese (Chen canagica) of known age were observed breeding on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska. No one- or two-year old geese were observed on nests. Three-year old geese bred at a lower rate than four-year old geese. These data suggest that patterns of age-specific breeding in Emperor Geese are similar to other sympatrically nesting, large bodied geese [Greater White-fronted Geese (Anser albifrons)] but delayed relative to smaller bodied geese [Cackling Canada Geese (Branta canadensis minima) and Pacific Black Brant (B. bernicla nigricans)].

  8. Estimating superpopulation size and annual probability of breeding for pond-breeding salamanders

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kinkead, K.E.; Otis, D.L.

    2007-01-01

    It has long been accepted that amphibians can skip breeding in any given year, and environmental conditions act as a cue for breeding. In this paper, we quantify temporary emigration or nonbreeding probability for mole and spotted salamanders (Ambystoma talpoideum and A. maculatum). We estimated that 70% of mole salamanders may skip breeding during an average rainfall year and 90% may skip during a drought year. Spotted salamanders may be more likely to breed, with only 17% avoiding the breeding pond during an average rainfall year. We illustrate how superpopulations can be estimated using temporary emigration probability estimates. The superpopulation is the total number of salamanders associated with a given breeding pond. Although most salamanders stay within a certain distance of a breeding pond for the majority of their life spans, it is difficult to determine true overall population sizes for a given site if animals are only captured during a brief time frame each year with some animals unavailable for capture at any time during a given year. ?? 2007 by The Herpetologists' League, Inc.

  9. Genetic distance and species formation in evolving populations.

    PubMed

    Higgs, P G; Derrida, B

    1992-11-01

    We compare the behavior of the genetic distance between individuals in evolving populations for three stochastic models. In the first model reproduction is asexual and the distribution of genetic distances reflects the genealogical tree of the population. This distribution fluctuates greatly in time, even for very large populations. In the second model reproduction is sexual with random mating allowed between any pair of individuals. In this case, the population becomes homogeneous and the genetic distance between pairs of individuals has small fluctuations which vanish in the limit of an infinitely large population. In the third model reproduction is still sexual but instead of random mating, mating only occurs between individuals which are genetically similar to each other. In that case, the population splits spontaneously into species which are in reproductive isolation from one another and one observes a steady state with a continual appearance and extinction of species in the population. We discuss this model in relation to the biological theory of speciation and isolating mechanisms. We also point out similarities between these three models of evolving populations and the theory of disordered systems in physics.

  10. Evolving mobile robots in simulated and real environments.

    PubMed

    Miglino, O; Lund, H H; Nolfi, S

    1995-01-01

    The problem of the validity of simulation is particularly relevant for methodologies that use machine learning techniques to develop control systems for autonomous robots, as, for instance, the artificial life approach known as evolutionary robotics. In fact, although it has been demonstrated that training or evolving robots in real environments is possible, the number of trials needed to test the system discourages the use of physical robots during the training period. By evolving neural controllers for a Khepera robot in computer simulations and then transferring the agents obtained to the real environment we show that (a) an accurate model of a particular robot-environment dynamics can be built by sampling the real world through the sensors and the actuators of the robot; (b) the performance gap between the obtained behaviors in simulated and real environments may be significantly reduced by introducing a "conservative" form of noise; (c) if a decrease in performance is observed when the system is transferred to a real environment, successful and robust results can be obtained by continuing the evolutionary process in the real environment for a few generations.

  11. Structural Analysis of an Evolved Transketolase Reveals Divergent Binding Modes

    PubMed Central

    Affaticati, Pierre E.; Dai, Shao-Bo; Payongsri, Panwajee; Hailes, Helen C.; Tittmann, Kai; Dalby, Paul A.

    2016-01-01

    The S385Y/D469T/R520Q variant of E. coli transketolase was evolved previously with three successive smart libraries, each guided by different structural, bioinformatical or computational methods. Substrate-walking progressively shifted the target acceptor substrate from phosphorylated aldehydes, towards a non-phosphorylated polar aldehyde, a non-polar aliphatic aldehyde, and finally a non-polar aromatic aldehyde. Kinetic evaluations on three benzaldehyde derivatives, suggested that their active-site binding was differentially sensitive to the S385Y mutation. Docking into mutants generated in silico from the wild-type crystal structure was not wholly satisfactory, as errors accumulated with successive mutations, and hampered further smart-library designs. Here we report the crystal structure of the S385Y/D469T/R520Q variant, and molecular docking of three substrates. This now supports our original hypothesis that directed-evolution had generated an evolutionary intermediate with divergent binding modes for the three aromatic aldehydes tested. The new active site contained two binding pockets supporting π-π stacking interactions, sterically separated by the D469T mutation. While 3-formylbenzoic acid (3-FBA) preferred one pocket, and 4-FBA the other, the less well-accepted substrate 3-hydroxybenzaldehyde (3-HBA) was caught in limbo with equal preference for the two pockets. This work highlights the value of obtaining crystal structures of evolved enzyme variants, for continued and reliable use of smart library strategies. PMID:27767080

  12. Costs Associated with Equine Breeding in Kentucky

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walker, Cassandra L.

    There were approximately 9 million horses in the United States having a 102 billion impact on the U.S. economy (AHC, 2005). Over 1 million of those horses were involved in the breeding sector. In Kentucky, nearly 18% of the horse population have been involved in breeding. Managing an equine enterprise can be difficult, particularly given that many who undertake such endeavors do not have a background or education in business management. Kentucky Cooperative Extension has produced interactive spreadsheets to help horse owners better understand the costs associated with owning horses or managing certain equine businesses, including boarding and training operations. However, there has been little support for breeders. Therefore, the objectives of this study were to provide owners with a list of services offered for breeding and the costs associated with those services. Survey questions were created from a list of topics pertinent to equine breeding and from that list of questions, an electronic survey was created. The survey was sent via Qualtrics Survey Software to collect information on stallion and mare management costs as well as expenses related to owning and breeding. Question topics included veterinary and housing costs, management and advertising expenses, and membership fees. A total of 78 farms were selected from the 2013 breeder's listings for the Kentucky Quarter Horse Association (n = 39) and the Kentucky Thoroughbred Farm Managers' Club (n = 26), and other breed association contacts (n = 13). These farms were selected from the lists by outside individuals who were not related to the project. Participants were asked to answer all questions relevant to the farm. After the initial survey distribution, follow-up e-mails and phone calls were conducted in order to answer any questions participants might have had about the survey. Survey response rate was 32.1% (25 of 78 surveys returned). Farms in Kentucky had an average of two farm-owned and two outside

  13. Accuracy of genotype imputation in sheep breeds.

    PubMed

    Hayes, B J; Bowman, P J; Daetwyler, H D; Kijas, J W; van der Werf, J H J

    2012-02-01

    Although genomic selection offers the prospect of improving the rate of genetic gain in meat, wool and dairy sheep breeding programs, the key constraint is likely to be the cost of genotyping. Potentially, this constraint can be overcome by genotyping selection candidates for a low density (low cost) panel of SNPs with sparse genotype coverage, imputing a much higher density of SNP genotypes using a densely genotyped reference population. These imputed genotypes would then be used with a prediction equation to produce genomic estimated breeding values. In the future, it may also be desirable to impute very dense marker genotypes or even whole genome re-sequence data from moderate density SNP panels. Such a strategy could lead to an accurate prediction of genomic estimated breeding values across breeds, for example. We used genotypes from 48 640 (50K) SNPs genotyped in four sheep breeds to investigate both the accuracy of imputation of the 50K SNPs from low density SNP panels, as well as prospects for imputing very dense or whole genome re-sequence data from the 50K SNPs (by leaving out a small number of the 50K SNPs at random). Accuracy of imputation was low if the sparse panel had less than 5000 (5K) markers. Across breeds, it was clear that the accuracy of imputing from sparse marker panels to 50K was higher if the genetic diversity within a breed was lower, such that relationships among animals in that breed were higher. The accuracy of imputation from sparse genotypes to 50K genotypes was higher when the imputation was performed within breed rather than when pooling all the data, despite the fact that the pooled reference set was much larger. For Border Leicesters, Poll Dorsets and White Suffolks, 5K sparse genotypes were sufficient to impute 50K with 80% accuracy. For Merinos, the accuracy of imputing 50K from 5K was lower at 71%, despite a large number of animals with full genotypes (2215) being used as a reference. For all breeds, the relationship of

  14. Implications of mercury and lead concentrations on breeding physiology and phenology in an Arctic bird.

    PubMed

    Provencher, J F; Forbes, M R; Hennin, H L; Love, O P; Braune, B M; Mallory, M L; Gilchrist, H G

    2016-11-01

    Although physiological traits and phenology are thought to be evolved traits, they often show marked variation within populations, which may be related to extrinsic factors. For example, trace elements such as mercury (Hg) and lead (Pb) alter biochemical processes within wildlife that may affect migration and breeding. While there is a growing understanding of how contaminants may influence wildlife physiology, studies addressing these interactions in free-living species are still limited. We examined how four non-essential trace elements (cadmium, Hg, Pb and selenium) interacted with physiological and breeding measures known to influence breeding in a free-living population of common eider ducks (Somateria mollissima). We collected blood from female eiders as they arrived at a breeding colony in northern Canada. Blood was subsequently assessed for baseline corticosterone (CORT), immunoglobulin Y (IgY), and the four trace elements. We used model selection to identify which elements varied most with CORT, IgY, arrival condition, and arrival timing. We then used path analysis to assess how the top two elements from the model selection process (Hg and Pb) varied with metrics known to influence reproduction. We found that arrival date, blood Hg, CORT, and IgY showed significant inter-annual variation. While blood Pb concentrations were low, blood Pb levels significantly increased with later arrival date of the birds, and varied negatively with eider body condition, suggesting that even at low blood concentrations, Pb may be related to lower investment in reproduction in eiders. In contrast, blood Hg concentrations were positively correlated with eider body condition, indicating that fatter birds also had higher Hg burdens. Overall, our results suggest that although blood Hg and Pb concentrations were below no-effect levels, these low level concentrations of known toxic metals show significant relationships with breeding onset and condition in female eider ducks

  15. Dietary Variation and Evolution of Gene Copy Number among Dog Breeds

    PubMed Central

    Reiter, Taylor; Jagoda, Evelyn; Capellini, Terence D.

    2016-01-01

    Prolonged human interactions and artificial selection have influenced the genotypic and phenotypic diversity among dog breeds. Because humans and dogs occupy diverse habitats, ecological contexts have likely contributed to breed-specific positive selection. Prior to the advent of modern dog-feeding practices, there was likely substantial variation in dietary landscapes among disparate dog breeds. As such, we investigated one type of genetic variant, copy number variation, in three metabolic genes: glucokinase regulatory protein (GCKR), phytanol-CoA 2-hydroxylase (PHYH), and pancreatic α-amylase 2B (AMY2B). These genes code for proteins that are responsible for metabolizing dietary products that originate from distinctly different food types: sugar, meat, and starch, respectively. After surveying copy number variation among dogs with diverse dietary histories, we found no correlation between diet and positive selection in either GCKR or PHYH. Although it has been previously demonstrated that dogs experienced a copy number increase in AMY2B relative to wolves during or after the dog domestication process, we demonstrate that positive selection continued to act on amylase copy number in dog breeds that consumed starch-rich diets in time periods after domestication. Furthermore, we found that introgression with wolves is not responsible for deterioration of positive selection on AMY2B among diverse dog breeds. Together, this supports the hypothesis that the amylase copy number expansion is found universally in dogs. PMID:26863414

  16. Selective Attention and Control of Action: Comparative Psychology of an Artificial, Evolved Agent and People

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ward, Robert; Ward, Ronnie

    2008-01-01

    This study examined the selective attention abilities of a simple, artificial, evolved agent and considered implications of the agent's performance for theories of selective attention and action. The agent processed two targets in continuous time, catching one and then the other. This task required many cognitive operations, including prioritizing…

  17. Evolvability Is an Evolved Ability: The Coding Concept as the Arch-Unit of Natural Selection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Janković, Srdja; Ćirković, Milan M.

    2016-03-01

    Physical processes that characterize living matter are qualitatively distinct in that they involve encoding and transfer of specific types of information. Such information plays an active part in the control of events that are ultimately linked to the capacity of the system to persist and multiply. This algorithmicity of life is a key prerequisite for its Darwinian evolution, driven by natural selection acting upon stochastically arising variations of the encoded information. The concept of evolvability attempts to define the total capacity of a system to evolve new encoded traits under appropriate conditions, i.e., the accessible section of total morphological space. Since this is dependent on previously evolved regulatory networks that govern information flow in the system, evolvability itself may be regarded as an evolved ability. The way information is physically written, read and modified in living cells (the "coding concept") has not changed substantially during the whole history of the Earth's biosphere. This biosphere, be it alone or one of many, is, accordingly, itself a product of natural selection, since the overall evolvability conferred by its coding concept (nucleic acids as information carriers with the "rulebook of meanings" provided by codons, as well as all the subsystems that regulate various conditional information-reading modes) certainly played a key role in enabling this biosphere to survive up to the present, through alterations of planetary conditions, including at least five catastrophic events linked to major mass extinctions. We submit that, whatever the actual prebiotic physical and chemical processes may have been on our home planet, or may, in principle, occur at some time and place in the Universe, a particular coding concept, with its respective potential to give rise to a biosphere, or class of biospheres, of a certain evolvability, may itself be regarded as a unit (indeed the arch-unit) of natural selection.

  18. Evolvability Is an Evolved Ability: The Coding Concept as the Arch-Unit of Natural Selection.

    PubMed

    Janković, Srdja; Ćirković, Milan M

    2016-03-01

    Physical processes that characterize living matter are qualitatively distinct in that they involve encoding and transfer of specific types of information. Such information plays an active part in the control of events that are ultimately linked to the capacity of the system to persist and multiply. This algorithmicity of life is a key prerequisite for its Darwinian evolution, driven by natural selection acting upon stochastically arising variations of the encoded information. The concept of evolvability attempts to define the total capacity of a system to evolve new encoded traits under appropriate conditions, i.e., the accessible section of total morphological space. Since this is dependent on previously evolved regulatory networks that govern information flow in the system, evolvability itself may be regarded as an evolved ability. The way information is physically written, read and modified in living cells (the "coding concept") has not changed substantially during the whole history of the Earth's biosphere. This biosphere, be it alone or one of many, is, accordingly, itself a product of natural selection, since the overall evolvability conferred by its coding concept (nucleic acids as information carriers with the "rulebook of meanings" provided by codons, as well as all the subsystems that regulate various conditional information-reading modes) certainly played a key role in enabling this biosphere to survive up to the present, through alterations of planetary conditions, including at least five catastrophic events linked to major mass extinctions. We submit that, whatever the actual prebiotic physical and chemical processes may have been on our home planet, or may, in principle, occur at some time and place in the Universe, a particular coding concept, with its respective potential to give rise to a biosphere, or class of biospheres, of a certain evolvability, may itself be regarded as a unit (indeed the arch-unit) of natural selection.

  19. Malaria genomics: tracking a diverse and evolving parasite population.

    PubMed

    Kwiatkowski, Dominic

    2015-03-01

    Malaria parasites are continually evolving to evade the immune system and human attempts to control the disease. To eliminate malaria from regions where it is deeply entrenched we need ways of monitoring what is going on in the parasite population, detecting problematic changes as soon as they arise, and executing a prompt and effective response based on a deep understanding of this natural evolutionary process. Powerful new tools to address this problem are emerging from the fast-growing field of genomic epidemiology, driven by new sequencing technologies and computational methods that allow parasite genome variation to be studied in much greater detail and in many more samples than was previously considered possible. These new tools will provide a deep understanding of what is going on in the parasite population, generating actionable knowledge for strategic planning of control interventions, for monitoring their effects and steering them for greatest impact, and for raising the alert if things start to go wrong.

  20. The evolving block universe and the meshing together of times.

    PubMed

    Ellis, George F R

    2014-10-01

    It has been proposed that spacetime should be regarded as an evolving block universe, bounded to the future by the present time, which continually extends to the future. This future boundary is defined at each time by measuring proper time along Ricci eigenlines from the start of the universe. A key point, then, is that physical reality can be represented at many different scales: hence, the passage of time may be seen as different at different scales, with quantum gravity determining the evolution of spacetime itself at the Planck scale, but quantum field theory and classical physics determining the evolution of events within spacetime at larger scales. The fundamental issue then arises as to how the effective times at different scales mesh together, leading to the concepts of global and local times.

  1. Smart signal processing for an evolving electric grid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silva, Leandro Rodrigues Manso; Duque, Calos Augusto; Ribeiro, Paulo F.

    2015-12-01

    Electric grids are interconnected complex systems consisting of generation, transmission, distribution, and active loads, recently called prosumers as they produce and consume electric energy. Additionally, these encompass a vast array of equipment such as machines, power transformers, capacitor banks, power electronic devices, motors, etc. that are continuously evolving in their demand characteristics. Given these conditions, signal processing is becoming an essential assessment tool to enable the engineer and researcher to understand, plan, design, and operate the complex and smart electronic grid of the future. This paper focuses on recent developments associated with signal processing applied to power system analysis in terms of characterization and diagnostics. The following techniques are reviewed and their characteristics and applications discussed: active power system monitoring, sparse representation of power system signal, real-time resampling, and time-frequency (i.e., wavelets) applied to power fluctuations.

  2. Evolving management of metaplasia and dysplasia in Barrett's epithelium

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Richard P T; Mourad, Moustafa Mabrouk; Fisher, Simon G; Bramhall, Simon R

    2016-01-01

    Oesophageal cancer affects more than 450000 people worldwide and despite continued medical advancements the incidence of oesophageal cancer is increasing. Oesophageal cancer has a 5 year survival of 15%-25% and now globally attempts are made to more aggressively diagnose and treat Barrett’s oesophagus the known precursor to invasive disease. Currently diagnosis the of Barrett’s oesophagus is predominantly made after endoscopic visualisation and histopathological confirmation. Minimally invasive techniques are being developed to improve the viability of screening programs. The management of Barrett’s oesophagus can vary greatly dependent on the presence and severity of dysplasia. There is no consensus between the major international medical societies to determine and agreed surveillance and intervention pathway. In this review we analysed the current literature to demonstrate the evolving management of metaplasia and dysplasia in Barrett’s epithelium. PMID:28058012

  3. The rapidly evolving planetary nebula Hen 3-1357

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gry, C.

    Hen 3-1357 (known as the 'Stingray Nebula') is the youngest Planetary Nebula known in the sky. It has become ionized within the past few decades and its central star seems to be still rapidly evolving in the H-R diagram towards hotter effective temperatures. With this proposal we want to determine the current effective temperature of the central star and the characteristics of the stellar wind thirteen years after its discovery with IUE. This will enable us to determine whether the rapid spectral changes observed in the last few years are the consequence of an episodic post-AGB mass loss event or the result of a continuous evolution in the H-R digram. In any of these cases, the observations will help us to understand this short and, thus, still poorly known transition phase which leads to the formation of a new PN.

  4. Risky prey behavior evolves in risky habitats.

    PubMed

    Urban, Mark C

    2007-09-04

    Longstanding theory in behavioral ecology predicts that prey should evolve decreased foraging rates under high predation threat. However, an alternative perspective suggests that growth into a size refuge from gape-limited predation and the future benefits of large size can outweigh the initial survival costs of intense foraging. Here, I evaluate the relative contributions of selection from a gape-limited predator (Ambystoma opacum) and spatial location to explanations of variation in foraging, growth, and survival in 10 populations of salamander larvae (Ambystoma maculatum). Salamander larvae from populations naturally exposed to intense A. opacum predation risk foraged more actively under common garden conditions. Higher foraging rates were associated with low survival in populations exposed to free-ranging A. opacum larvae. Results demonstrate that risky foraging activity can evolve in high predation-risk habitats when the dominant predators are gape-limited. This finding invites the further exploration of diverse patterns of prey foraging behavior that depends on natural variation in predator size-selectivity. In particular, prey should adopt riskier behaviors under predation threat than expected under existing risk allocation models if foraging effort directly reduces the duration of risk by growth into a size refuge. Moreover, evidence from this study suggests that foraging has evolved over microgeographic scales despite substantial modification by regional gene flow. This interaction between local selection and spatial location suggests a joint role for adaptation and maladaptation in shaping species interactions across natural landscapes, which is a finding with implications for dynamics at the population, community, and metacommunity levels.

  5. Production and decay of evolving horizons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nielsen, Alex B.; Visser, Matt

    2006-07-01

    We consider a simple physical model for an evolving horizon that is strongly interacting with its environment, exchanging arbitrarily large quantities of matter with its environment in the form of both infalling material and outgoing Hawking radiation. We permit fluxes of both lightlike and timelike particles to cross the horizon, and ask how the horizon grows and shrinks in response to such flows. We place a premium on providing a clear and straightforward exposition with simple formulae. To be able to handle such a highly dynamical situation in a simple manner we make one significant physical restriction—that of spherical symmetry—and two technical mathematical restrictions: (1) we choose to slice the spacetime in such a way that the spacetime foliations (and hence the horizons) are always spherically symmetric. (2) Furthermore, we adopt Painlevé Gullstrand coordinates (which are well suited to the problem because they are nonsingular at the horizon) in order to simplify the relevant calculations. Of course physics results are ultimately independent of the choice of coordinates, but this particular coordinate system yields a clean physical interpretation of the relevant physics. We find particularly simple forms for surface gravity, and for the first and second law of black hole thermodynamics, in this general evolving horizon situation. Furthermore, we relate our results to Hawking's apparent horizon, Ashtekar and co-worker's isolated and dynamical horizons, and Hayward's trapping horizon. The evolving black hole model discussed here will be of interest, both from an astrophysical viewpoint in terms of discussing growing black holes and from a purely theoretical viewpoint in discussing black hole evaporation via Hawking radiation.

  6. Investigating Evolved Compositions Around Wolf Crater

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greenhagen, B. T.; Cahill, J. T. S.; Jolliff, B. L.; Lawrence, S. J.; Glotch, T. D.

    2017-01-01

    Wolf crater is an irregularly shaped, approximately 25 km crater in the south-central portion of Mare Nubium on the lunar nearside. While not previously identified as a lunar "red spot", Wolf crater was identified as a Th anomaly by Lawrence and coworkers. We have used data from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) to determine the area surrounding Wolf crater has composition more similar to highly evolved, non-mare volcanic structures than typical lunar crustal lithology. In this presentation, we will investigate the geomorphology and composition of the Wolf crater and discuss implications for the origin of the anomalous terrain.

  7. Cobalt-phosphate oxygen-evolving compound.

    PubMed

    Kanan, Matthew W; Surendranath, Yogesh; Nocera, Daniel G

    2009-01-01

    The utilization of solar energy on a large scale requires efficient storage. Solar-to-fuels has the capacity to meet large scale storage needs as demonstrated by natural photosynthesis. This process uses sunlight to rearrange the bonds of water to furnish O2 and an H2-equivalent. We present a tutorial review of our efforts to develop an amorphous cobalt-phosphate catalyst that oxidizes water to O2. The use of earth-abundant materials, operation in water at neutral pH, and the formation of the catalyst in situ captures functional elements of the oxygen evolving complex of Photosystem II.

  8. Evolvable circuit with transistor-level reconfigurability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stoica, Adrian (Inventor); Salazar-Lazaro, Carlos Harold (Inventor)

    2004-01-01

    An evolvable circuit includes a plurality of reconfigurable switches, a plurality of transistors within a region of the circuit, the plurality of transistors having terminals, the plurality of transistors being coupled between a power source terminal and a power sink terminal so as to be capable of admitting power between the power source terminal and the power sink terminal, the plurality of transistors being coupled so that every transistor terminal to transistor terminal coupling within the region of the circuit comprises a reconfigurable switch.

  9. An evolving paradigm for the secretory pathway?

    PubMed Central

    Lippincott-Schwartz, Jennifer

    2011-01-01

    The paradigm that the secretory pathway consists of a stable endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi apparatus, using discrete transport vesicles to exchange their contents, gained important support from groundbreaking biochemical and genetic studies during the 1980s. However, the subsequent development of new imaging technologies with green fluorescent protein introduced data on dynamic processes not fully accounted for by the paradigm. As a result, we may be seeing an example of how a paradigm is evolving to account for the results of new technologies and their new ways of describing cellular processes. PMID:22039065

  10. Development and application of biological technologies in fish genetic breeding.

    PubMed

    Xu, Kang; Duan, Wei; Xiao, Jun; Tao, Min; Zhang, Chun; Liu, Yun; Liu, ShaoJun

    2015-02-01

    Fish genetic breeding is a process that remolds heritable traits to obtain neotype and improved varieties. For the purpose of genetic improvement, researchers can select for desirable genetic traits, integrate a suite of traits from different donors, or alter the innate genetic traits of a species. These improved varieties have, in many cases, facilitated the development of the aquaculture industry by lowering costs and increasing both quality and yield. In this review, we present the pertinent literatures and summarize the biological bases and application of selection breeding technologies (containing traditional selective breeding, molecular marker-assisted breeding, genome-wide selective breeding and breeding by controlling single-sex groups), integration breeding technologies (containing cross breeding, nuclear transplantation, germline stem cells and germ cells transplantation, artificial gynogenesis, artificial androgenesis and polyploid breeding) and modification breeding technologies (represented by transgenic breeding) in fish genetic breeding. Additionally, we discuss the progress our laboratory has made in the field of chromosomal ploidy breeding of fish, including distant hybridization, gynogenesis, and androgenesis. Finally, we systematically summarize the research status and known problems associated with each technology.

  11. Rapid cyling plant breeding in citrus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Resistance or tolerance to huanglongbing (HLB) and other important traits have been identified in several citrus types and relatives and associated markers should be identified soon. What is urgently needed in addition is an accelerated strategy for citrus variety breeding. Identification and use of...

  12. A New Breed of Environmental Film

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Malamud, Randy

    2008-01-01

    In this article, the author reports how today's environmental film festivals feature a new breed of documentary that offer nuanced narratives about intricate technologies. The author relates that the environmental films he grew up with sedately depicted the quiet sublimity of the wilderness. Today's films, the author observes, aim far beyond a…

  13. Combination solar hothouse and silkworm breeding house

    SciTech Connect

    Vardiashvili, A.B.; Muradov, M.; Kim, V.D.

    1980-01-01

    The basic arrangement is shown for a combination silkworm breeding house and solar hothouse with subsoil irrigation and accumulation of heat; it employs a semicylindrical film covering. The process of accumulation of solar heat in the subsoil pebble stores, in water-heater banks, and in the soil is described.

  14. Breeding System of Ruellia succulenta Small (Acanthaceae)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This study examines the breeding system of Ruellia succulenta (Acanthaceae), an herbaceous perennial found in the pine rockland habitat of southern Florida. Hand pollination treatments were performed on 75 plants, 25 from each of three sites. Treatments applied to test plants included: 1) control ...

  15. Marketing potential of advanced breeding clones

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The accumulation of reducing sugars during cold storage of potato tubers is a serious and costly problem for producers and processors. The degree to which cultivars accumulate reducing sugars during storage determines their processing and market potential. Cultivars or advanced breeding lines with...

  16. Impacts of the USDA basic breeding program

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The USDAs basic sugarcane breeding program began in the mid 1950s with the objective of moving genes from wild sugarcane germplasm into commercial cane. Several releases have been made from this program, but it is a very long process. To date, the pedigree of seven commercial Louisiana varieties can...

  17. Impacts of the basic breeding program

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The USDAs basic sugarcane breeding program began in the mid 1950s with the objective of moving genes from wild sugarcane germplasm into commercial cane. Several releases have been made from this program, but it is a very long process. To date, the pedigree of seven commercial Louisiana varieties ca...

  18. Linkage Drag: Implication for Plant Breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Linkage drag is commonly observed in plant breeding, yet the molecular mechanisms controlling this is unclear. The Pi-ta gene, a single copy gene near the centromere region of chromosome 12, confers resistance to races of Magnaporthe oryzae that contain AVR-Pita. The Pi-ta gene in Tetep has been su...

  19. Breeding for phytonutrient content; examples from watermelon

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Breeding for high phytonutrient fruits and vegetables can be a fairly straightforward endeavor when the compounds of interest produce a visible effect or the methods for quantifying the compounds simple and inexpensive. Lycopene in tomatoes and watermelon is one such compound, since the amount of r...

  20. Breed differences in behavioural development in kittens.

    PubMed

    Marchei, P; Diverio, S; Falocci, N; Fatjó, J; Ruiz-de-la-Torre, J L; Manteca, X

    2009-03-23

    Differences in behaviour of pure breed cats have been suggested but not wholly investigated. Oriental/Siamese/Abyssinian (OSA) kittens (n=43) were weekly compared with Norwegian Forest (NFO) kittens (n=39) from the 4th to the 10th week of age in a repeated Open Field Test (OFT) paradigm. Heart rate (HR) and rectal temperature (RT) before and after the test, and behavioural responses during the OFT were recorded. Behaviours registered were analysed by focal animal sampling. Significant breed differences were found; cats of the northern zones (NFO) seem to develop earlier thermoregulatory abilities. Precocious opening of eyes, higher locomotion scores and longer time spent standing, observed in OSA kittens may indicate an earlier neurological development. Inter breed differences recorded for exploration and locomotion seem to indicate coping style divergences: in the OFT challenging situation OSA kittens presented higher emotional tachycardia and performed more passively, with a faster decline in exploration and locomotion scores. NFO kittens exerted a more active behaviour as they spent more time exploring the arena and in escape attempts. Notwithstanding OSA and NFO cat selection was mainly aimed to improve divergent morphological traits, some different behavioural and physiological traits seem to have been maintained or co-selected within each breed.

  1. Breeding lettuce for fresh-cut processing

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Lettuce is increasingly consumed in fresh-cut packaged salads. New cultivars specifically bred for this use can enhance production and processing efficiency and extend shelf life. Cultivars with novel head architectures and leaf traits are being released by private and public breeding programs with ...

  2. Recent advances in peanut breeding and genetics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Most previous advances in peanut cultivar development have been made using conventional breeding methods for self-pollinated crops. Peanut has lagged behind many other crops on use of molecular genetic technology for cultivar development in part due to lack of investment, but also because of low le...

  3. Mary Bidwell Breed: The Educator as Dean.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fley, Jo Ann; Jaramillo, George R.

    1979-01-01

    Mary Bidwell Breed predicted that midwestern universities would probably "pass through a stage of educational development in which the liberal arts are entirely feminized, the men are entirely commercialized." We can appreciate how close she came to pinpointing trends which did not begin to be reversed until sixty years later.…

  4. New Brahman breed improvement program at STARS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    At the USDA, ARS, Subtropical Agricultural Research Station (STARS) in Brooksville, Florida we have initiated a new ambitious research project that many believe will have a positive influence on the Brahman breed. This research was developed from a meeting held at STARS that included past and prese...

  5. Traditional breeding and cultivar development (potato)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Traditional breeding allows for the genetic ‘reshuffling’ of genes and their recombination into new genotypes that may carry the desired assemblage of resistance and agronomic traits necessary for release as a new cultivar. While molecular biology techniques can be useful for improving upon a weakne...

  6. Genomics to feed a switchgrass breeding program

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Development of improved cultivars is one of three pillars, along with sustainable production and efficient conversion, required for dedicated cellulosic bioenergy crops to succeed. Breeding new cultivars is a long, slow process requiring patience, dedication, and motivation to realize gains and adva...

  7. A brief genomic history of tomato breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Here we report a brief genomic history of tomato breeding by analyzing the genomes of 360 diverse accessions collected all over the world. These included 333 accessions from the red fruited clade (S. pimpinellifolium, S. l. var. cerasiforme, and S. lycopersicum) that represent various geographical o...

  8. Application of Genomic Tools in Plant Breeding

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-de-Castro, A.M.; Vilanova, S.; Cañizares, J.; Pascual, L.; Blanca, J.M.; Díez, M.J.; Prohens, J.; Picó, B.

    2012-01-01

    Plant breeding has been very successful in developing improved varieties using conventional tools and methodologies. Nowadays, the availability of genomic tools and resources is leading to a new revolution of plant breeding, as they facilitate the study of the genotype and its relationship with the phenotype, in particular for complex traits. Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technologies are allowing the mass sequencing of genomes and transcriptomes, which is producing a vast array of genomic information. The analysis of NGS data by means of bioinformatics developments allows discovering new genes and regulatory sequences and their positions, and makes available large collections of molecular markers. Genome-wide expression studies provide breeders with an understanding of the molecular basis of complex traits. Genomic approaches include TILLING and EcoTILLING, which make possible to screen mutant and germplasm collections for allelic variants in target genes. Re-sequencing of genomes is very useful for the genome-wide discovery of markers amenable for high-throughput genotyping platforms, like SSRs and SNPs, or the construction of high density genetic maps. All these tools and resources facilitate studying the genetic diversity, which is important for germplasm management, enhancement and use. Also, they allow the identification of markers linked to genes and QTLs, using a diversity of techniques like bulked segregant analysis (BSA), fine genetic mapping, or association mapping. These new markers are used for marker assisted selection, including marker assisted backcross selection, ‘breeding by design’, or new strategies, like genomic selection. In conclusion, advances in genomics are providing breeders with new tools and methodologies that allow a great leap forward in plant breeding, including the ‘superdomestication’ of crops and the genetic dissection and breeding for complex traits. PMID:23115520

  9. Breeding productivity of Smith Island black ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Haramis, G.M.; Jorde, D.G.; Olsen, G.H.; Stotts, D.B.; Harrison, M.K.; Perry, M.C.

    2002-01-01

    We investigated the breeding performance of American black ducks (Anas rubripes) on Smith Island, Chesapeake Bay, to improve our understanding of island black duck breeding ecology and to make management recommendations to enhance productivity. During 1995-96, we implanted 56 female black ducks with 20-g radio transmitters and tracked 35 of the individuals through the breeding season to locate nests, determine nest fate, and identify brood habitat. We also increased preseason banding efforts and compared capture characteristics over 12 years with those from the Deal Island Wildlife Management Area, a banding site on the mainland of Tangier Sound. A low rate of nesting (37%), lack of renesting, and poor hatching success (31%) indicated that island salt marsh habitats present a harsh environment for breeding black ducks. Black ducks located 11 of 13 nests (85%) in black needlerush (Juncus roemerianus) marsh where they were vulnerable to flooding from extreme tides and to egg predators. No nests were found on forested tree hammocks, a feature that distinguishes Smith Island from nearby South Marsh and Bloodsworth Islands. Nest predators included red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), herring gulls (Larus argentams), fish crows (Corvus ossifragus), and, potentially, Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus). Unlike mainland red foxes, foxes radio tracked on Smith Island were found to be capable swimmers and effective low marsh predators. We found shoreline meadows of widgeon grass (Ruppia maritima) to be important foraging sites for black ducks and suspected that the virtual absence of fresh water in this high salinity environment (1217+ ppt) to incur some cost in terms of growth and survival of ducklings. Preseason bandings revealed a high proportion of banded adults and a strong positive correlation in age ratios with the Deal Island banding site. This latter finding strongly suggests a negative universal effect of storm tides on nest success for Tangier Sound black ducks. Management to

  10. Strategic Plan for the North American Breeding Bird Survey: 2006-2010

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ,

    2007-01-01

    program to continue to meet the evolving needs of the conservation community for information on bird population change. By setting clear goals, strategies, and measures of success, this plan provides a cohesive framework and vision for maintenance and development of the BBS. The plan identifies two major goals for the BBS, with a number of strategies and objectives to achieve these goals. Over the next 5 years, progress made in addressing each long-term goal and its associated 5-year strategies and objectives will gage the plan's success. Specific actions, projected outcomes, and measures of success related to accomplishing these are outlined in Table 1, with a timeline in Table 2. The two main goals for the program, with a summary of the strategies to achieve them, are: Goal 1: Collect scientifically credible measures of the status and trends of North American bird populations at continental and regional scales. The North American Breeding Bird Survey will continue to support North American natural resource conservation through the collection of scientifically credible measures of the status and trends of continental bird populations. While doing this, the BBS will work to improve the science behind the program to better meet its mission and the changing needs of the avian conservation community. In partnership with collaborators, the BBS will address detection probability bias and habitat bias, improve analytical methods, and more fully assess and account for observer quality. Moreover, the BBS will improve the quality and breadth of avian population data through strategic increases in route density and the establishment of a Mexican BBS program. Goal 2: Ensure BBS data and analytical results are widely available and easily accessible for use by the avian conservation and management communities. At the heart of the BBS lies a four-million-record database containing more than 40 years of data on more than 600 bird species. These data are of no valu

  11. The emotion system promotes diversity and evolvability

    PubMed Central

    Giske, Jarl; Eliassen, Sigrunn; Fiksen, Øyvind; Jakobsen, Per J.; Aksnes, Dag L.; Mangel, Marc; Jørgensen, Christian

    2014-01-01

    Studies on the relationship between the optimal phenotype and its environment have had limited focus on genotype-to-phenotype pathways and their evolutionary consequences. Here, we study how multi-layered trait architecture and its associated constraints prescribe diversity. Using an idealized model of the emotion system in fish, we find that trait architecture yields genetic and phenotypic diversity even in absence of frequency-dependent selection or environmental variation. That is, for a given environment, phenotype frequency distributions are predictable while gene pools are not. The conservation of phenotypic traits among these genetically different populations is due to the multi-layered trait architecture, in which one adaptation at a higher architectural level can be achieved by several different adaptations at a lower level. Our results emphasize the role of convergent evolution and the organismal level of selection. While trait architecture makes individuals more constrained than what has been assumed in optimization theory, the resulting populations are genetically more diverse and adaptable. The emotion system in animals may thus have evolved by natural selection because it simultaneously enhances three important functions, the behavioural robustness of individuals, the evolvability of gene pools and the rate of evolutionary innovation at several architectural levels. PMID:25100697

  12. Have plants evolved to self-immolate?

    PubMed Central

    Bowman, David M. J. S.; French, Ben J.; Prior, Lynda D.

    2014-01-01

    By definition fire prone ecosystems have highly combustible plants, leading to the hypothesis, first formally stated by Mutch in 1970, that community flammability is the product of natural selection of flammable traits. However, proving the “Mutch hypothesis” has presented an enormous challenge for fire ecologists given the difficulty in establishing cause and effect between landscape fire and flammable plant traits. Individual plant traits (such as leaf moisture content, retention of dead branches and foliage, oil rich foliage) are known to affect the flammability of plants but there is no evidence these characters evolved specifically to self-immolate, although some of these traits may have been secondarily modified to increase the propensity to burn. Demonstrating individual benefits from self-immolation is extraordinarily difficult, given the intersection of the physical environmental factors that control landscape fire (fuel production, dryness and ignitions) with community flammability properties that emerge from numerous traits of multiple species (canopy cover and litter bed bulk density). It is more parsimonious to conclude plants have evolved mechanisms to tolerate, but not promote, landscape fire. PMID:25414710

  13. Evolvability of an Optimal Recombination Rate.

    PubMed

    Lobkovsky, Alexander E; Wolf, Yuri I; Koonin, Eugene V

    2015-12-10

    Evolution and maintenance of genetic recombination and its relation to the mutational process is a long-standing, fundamental problem in evolutionary biology that is linked to the general problem of evolution of evolvability. We explored a stochastic model of the evolution of recombination using additive fitness and infinite allele assumptions but no assumptions on the sign or magnitude of the epistasis and the distribution of mutation effects. In this model, fluctuating negative epistasis and predominantly deleterious mutations arise naturally as a consequence of the additive fitness and a reservoir from which new alleles arrive with a fixed distribution of fitness effects. Analysis of the model revealed a nonmonotonic effect of recombination intensity on fitness, with an optimal recombination rate value which maximized fitness in steady state. The optimal recombination rate depended on the mutation rate and was evolvable, that is, subject to selection. The predictions of the model were compatible with the observations on the dependence between genome rearrangement rate and gene flux in microbial genomes.

  14. The Comet Cometh: Evolving Developmental Systems.

    PubMed

    Jaeger, Johannes; Laubichler, Manfred; Callebaut, Werner

    In a recent opinion piece, Denis Duboule has claimed that the increasing shift towards systems biology is driving evolutionary and developmental biology apart, and that a true reunification of these two disciplines within the framework of evolutionary developmental biology (EvoDevo) may easily take another 100 years. He identifies methodological, epistemological, and social differences as causes for this supposed separation. Our article provides a contrasting view. We argue that Duboule's prediction is based on a one-sided understanding of systems biology as a science that is only interested in functional, not evolutionary, aspects of biological processes. Instead, we propose a research program for an evolutionary systems biology, which is based on local exploration of the configuration space in evolving developmental systems. We call this approach-which is based on reverse engineering, simulation, and mathematical analysis-the natural history of configuration space. We discuss a number of illustrative examples that demonstrate the past success of local exploration, as opposed to global mapping, in different biological contexts. We argue that this pragmatic mode of inquiry can be extended and applied to the mathematical analysis of the developmental repertoire and evolutionary potential of evolving developmental mechanisms and that evolutionary systems biology so conceived provides a pragmatic epistemological framework for the EvoDevo synthesis.

  15. Evolving MEMS Resonator Designs for Fabrication

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hornby, Gregory S.; Kraus, William F.; Lohn, Jason D.

    2008-01-01

    Because of their small size and high reliability, microelectromechanical (MEMS) devices have the potential to revolution many areas of engineering. As with conventionally-sized engineering design, there is likely to be a demand for the automated design of MEMS devices. This paper describes our current status as we progress toward our ultimate goal of using an evolutionary algorithm and a generative representation to produce designs of a MEMS device and successfully demonstrate its transfer to an actual chip. To produce designs that are likely to transfer to reality, we present two ways to modify evaluation of designs. The first is to add location noise, differences between the actual dimensions of the design and the design blueprint, which is a technique we have used for our work in evolving antennas and robots. The second method is to add prestress to model the warping that occurs during the extreme heat of fabrication. In future we expect to fabricate and test some MEMS resonators that are evolved in this way.

  16. Early formation of evolved asteroidal crust.

    PubMed

    Day, James M D; Ash, Richard D; Liu, Yang; Bellucci, Jeremy J; Rumble, Douglas; McDonough, William F; Walker, Richard J; Taylor, Lawrence A

    2009-01-08

    Mechanisms for the formation of crust on planetary bodies remain poorly understood. It is generally accepted that Earth's andesitic continental crust is the product of plate tectonics, whereas the Moon acquired its feldspar-rich crust by way of plagioclase flotation in a magma ocean. Basaltic meteorites provide evidence that, like the terrestrial planets, some asteroids generated crust and underwent large-scale differentiation processes. Until now, however, no evolved felsic asteroidal crust has been sampled or observed. Here we report age and compositional data for the newly discovered, paired and differentiated meteorites Graves Nunatak (GRA) 06128 and GRA 06129. These meteorites are feldspar-rich, with andesite bulk compositions. Their age of 4.52 +/- 0.06 Gyr demonstrates formation early in Solar System history. The isotopic and elemental compositions, degree of metamorphic re-equilibration and sulphide-rich nature of the meteorites are most consistent with an origin as partial melts from a volatile-rich, oxidized asteroid. GRA 06128 and 06129 are the result of a newly recognized style of evolved crust formation, bearing witness to incomplete differentiation of their parent asteroid and to previously unrecognized diversity of early-formed materials in the Solar System.

  17. Novel cooperation experimentally evolved between species.

    PubMed

    Harcombe, William

    2010-07-01

    Cooperation violates the view of "nature red in tooth and claw" that prevails in our understanding of evolution, yet examples of cooperation abound. Most work has focused on maintenance of cooperation within a single species through mechanisms such as kin selection. The factors necessary for the evolutionary origin of aiding unrelated individuals such as members of another species have not been experimentally tested. Here, I demonstrate that cooperation between species can be evolved in the laboratory if (1) there is preexisting reciprocation or feedback for cooperation, and (2) reciprocation is preferentially received by cooperative genotypes. I used a two species system involving Salmonella enterica ser. Typhimurium and an Escherichia coli mutant unable to synthesize an essential amino acid. In lactose media Salmonella consumes metabolic waste from E. coli, thus creating a mechanism of reciprocation for cooperation. Growth in a spatially structured environment assured that the benefits of cooperation were preferentially received by cooperative genotypes. Salmonella evolved to aid E. coli by excreting a costly amino acid, however this novel cooperation disappeared if the waste consumption or spatial structure were removed. This study builds on previous work to demonstrate an experimental origin of interspecific cooperation, and to test the factors necessary for such interactions to arise.

  18. Collapse of cooperation in evolving games

    PubMed Central

    Stewart, Alexander J.; Plotkin, Joshua B.

    2014-01-01

    Game theory provides a quantitative framework for analyzing the behavior of rational agents. The Iterated Prisoner’s Dilemma in particular has become a standard model for studying cooperation and cheating, with cooperation often emerging as a robust outcome in evolving populations. Here we extend evolutionary game theory by allowing players’ payoffs as well as their strategies to evolve in response to selection on heritable mutations. In nature, many organisms engage in mutually beneficial interactions and individuals may seek to change the ratio of risk to reward for cooperation by altering the resources they commit to cooperative interactions. To study this, we construct a general framework for the coevolution of strategies and payoffs in arbitrary iterated games. We show that, when there is a tradeoff between the benefits and costs of cooperation, coevolution often leads to a dramatic loss of cooperation in the Iterated Prisoner’s Dilemma. The collapse of cooperation is so extreme that the average payoff in a population can decline even as the potential reward for mutual cooperation increases. Depending upon the form of tradeoffs, evolution may even move away from the Iterated Prisoner’s Dilemma game altogether. Our work offers a new perspective on the Prisoner’s Dilemma and its predictions for cooperation in natural populations; and it provides a general framework to understand the coevolution of strategies and payoffs in iterated interactions. PMID:25422421

  19. Caterpillars evolved from onychophorans by hybridogenesis.

    PubMed

    Williamson, Donald I

    2009-11-24

    I reject the Darwinian assumption that larvae and their adults evolved from a single common ancestor. Rather I posit that, in animals that metamorphose, the basic types of larvae originated as adults of different lineages, i.e., larvae were transferred when, through hybridization, their genomes were acquired by distantly related animals. "Caterpillars," the name for eruciforms with thoracic and abdominal legs, are larvae of lepidopterans, hymenopterans, and mecopterans (scorpionflies). Grubs and maggots, including the larvae of beetles, bees, and flies, evolved from caterpillars by loss of legs. Caterpillar larval organs are dismantled and reconstructed in the pupal phase. Such indirect developmental patterns (metamorphoses) did not originate solely by accumulation of random mutations followed by natural selection; rather they are fully consistent with my concept of evolution by hybridogenesis. Members of the phylum Onychophora (velvet worms) are proposed as the evolutionary source of caterpillars and their grub or maggot descendants. I present a molecular biological research proposal to test my thesis. By my hypothesis 2 recognizable sets of genes are detectable in the genomes of all insects with caterpillar grub- or maggot-like larvae: (i) onychophoran genes that code for proteins determining larval morphology/physiology and (ii) sequentially expressed insect genes that code for adult proteins. The genomes of insects and other animals that, by contrast, entirely lack larvae comprise recognizable sets of genes from single animal common ancestors.

  20. BOOK REVIEW: OPENING SCIENCE, THE EVOLVING GUIDE ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The way we get our funding, collaborate, do our research, and get the word out has evolved over hundreds of years but we can imagine a more open science world, largely facilitated by the internet. The movement towards this more open way of doing and presenting science is coming, and it is not taking hundreds of years. If you are interested in these trends, and would like to find out more about where this is all headed and what it means to you, consider downloding Opening Science, edited by Sönke Bartling and Sascha Friesike, subtitled The Evolving Guide on How the Internet is Changing Research, Collaboration, and Scholarly Publishing. In 26 chapters by various authors from a range of disciplines the book explores the developing world of open science, starting from the first scientific revolution and bringing us to the next scientific revolution, sometimes referred to as “Science 2.0”. Some of the articles deal with the impact of the changing landscape of how science is done, looking at the impact of open science on Academia, or journal publishing, or medical research. Many of the articles look at the uses, pitfalls, and impact of specific tools, like microblogging (think Twitter), social networking, and reference management. There is lots of discussion and definition of terms you might use or misuse like “altmetrics” and “impact factor”. Science will probably never be completely open, and Twitter will probably never replace the journal article,

  1. Collapse of cooperation in evolving games.

    PubMed

    Stewart, Alexander J; Plotkin, Joshua B

    2014-12-09

    Game theory provides a quantitative framework for analyzing the behavior of rational agents. The Iterated Prisoner's Dilemma in particular has become a standard model for studying cooperation and cheating, with cooperation often emerging as a robust outcome in evolving populations. Here we extend evolutionary game theory by allowing players' payoffs as well as their strategies to evolve in response to selection on heritable mutations. In nature, many organisms engage in mutually beneficial interactions and individuals may seek to change the ratio of risk to reward for cooperation by altering the resources they commit to cooperative interactions. To study this, we construct a general framework for the coevolution of strategies and payoffs in arbitrary iterated games. We show that, when there is a tradeoff between the benefits and costs of cooperation, coevolution often leads to a dramatic loss of cooperation in the Iterated Prisoner's Dilemma. The collapse of cooperation is so extreme that the average payoff in a population can decline even as the potential reward for mutual cooperation increases. Depending upon the form of tradeoffs, evolution may even move away from the Iterated Prisoner's Dilemma game altogether. Our work offers a new perspective on the Prisoner's Dilemma and its predictions for cooperation in natural populations; and it provides a general framework to understand the coevolution of strategies and payoffs in iterated interactions.

  2. Not All Mosquitoes Need Standing Water to Breed

    MedlinePlus

    ... fullstory_164604.html Not All Mosquitoes Need Standing Water to Breed: Study Many of the critters lay ... curbing mosquitoes is to eliminate pools of standing water where they might breed. But new research on ...

  3. Genetic trends and breed overlap derived from multiple-breed genetic evaluations of beef cattle for growth traits.

    PubMed

    Sullivan, P G; Wilton, J W; Miller, S P; Banks, L R

    1999-08-01

    Genetic evaluations for a multiple-breed population of beef cattle were used to estimate genetic trends for five breeds, and genetic differences and overlap among 14 breeds. Genetic evaluations studied were for direct contributions to birth weight, gain from birth to 200 and 365 d, and maternal contribution to gain from birth to 200 d. Almost all genetic trends were positive, but the magnitude of the trends varied among breeds. Trends were nonlinear between 1985 and 1995 for most breed and trait combinations. The rates of increase in genetic trends were generally higher for the lighter weight breeds, and lighter weight breeds had faster growth rate genetic trends at 1995 than the heavier breeds. Genetic trend estimates for yearling gain at 1995 were 2.46, 2.23, 1.73, 1.70, and 1.46 kg/yr for Angus, Hereford, Limousin, Charolais, and Simmental, respectively. Corresponding birth weight genetic trends were .130, .226, .049, .130, and .048 kg/yr. Mean genetic differences between breeds have been decreasing in magnitude due to these differences in genetic trends between heavier and lighter breeds. Genetic variation for the traits studied seemed to be greater within than between breeds for calves born and cows calving between 1993 and 1995. Genetic trends at 1995 suggest that ratios of within:between breed variation will increase and that across-breed genetic improvement initiatives for growth traits will become more important in the future.

  4. Genetic diversity analyses reveal first insights into breed-specific selection signatures within Swiss goat breeds.

    PubMed

    Burren, A; Neuditschko, M; Signer-Hasler, H; Frischknecht, M; Reber, I; Menzi, F; Drögemüller, C; Flury, C

    2016-12-01

    We used genotype data from the caprine 50k Illumina BeadChip for the assessment of genetic diversity within and between 10 local Swiss goat breeds. Three different cluster methods allowed the goat samples to be assigned to the respective breed groups, whilst the samples of Nera Verzasca and Tessin Grey goats could not be differentiated from each other. The results of the different genetic diversity measures show that Appenzell, Toggenburg, Valais and Booted goats should be prioritized in future conservation activities. Furthermore, we examined runs of homozygosity (ROH) and compared genomic inbreeding coefficients based on ROH (FROH ) with pedigree-based inbreeding coefficients (FPED ). The linear relationship between FROH and FPED was confirmed for goats by including samples from the three main breeds (Saanen, Chamois and Toggenburg goats). FROH appears to be a suitable measure for describing levels of inbreeding in goat breeds with missing pedigree information. Finally, we derived selection signatures between the breeds. We report a total of 384 putative selection signals. The 25 most significant windows contained genes known for traits such as: coat color variation (MITF, KIT, ASIP), growth (IGF2, IGF2R, HRAS, FGFR3) and milk composition (PITX2). Several other putative genes involved in the formation of populations, which might have been selected for adaptation to the alpine environment, are highlighted. The results provide a contemporary background for the management of genetic diversity in local Swiss goat breeds.

  5. Variation in the prion protein sequence in Dutch goat breeds.

    PubMed

    Windig, J J; Hoving, R A H; Priem, J; Bossers, A; van Keulen, L J M; Langeveld, J P M

    2016-10-01

    Scrapie is a neurodegenerative disease occurring in goats and sheep. Several haplotypes of the prion protein increase resistance to scrapie infection and may be used in selective breeding to help eradicate scrapie. In this study, frequencies of the allelic variants of the PrP gene are determined for six goat breeds in the Netherlands. Overall frequencies in Dutch goats were determined from 768 brain tissue samples in 2005, 766 in 2008 and 300 in 2012, derived from random sampling for the national scrapie surveillance without knowledge of the breed. Breed specific frequencies were determined in the winter 2013/2014 by sampling 300 breeding animals from the main breeders of the different breeds. Detailed analysis of the scrapie-resistant K222 haplotype was carried out in 2014 for 220 Dutch Toggenburger goats and in 2015 for 942 goats from the Saanen derived White Goat breed. Nine haplotypes were identified in the Dutch breeds. Frequencies for non-wild type haplotypes were generally low. Exception was the K222 haplotype in the Dutch Toggenburger (29%) and the S146 haplotype in the Nubian and Boer breeds (respectively 7 and 31%). The frequency of the K222 haplotype in the Toggenburger was higher than for any other breed reported in literature, while for the White Goat breed it was with 3.1% similar to frequencies of other Saanen or Saanen derived breeds. Further evidence was found for the existence of two M142 haplotypes, M142 /S240 and M142 /P240 . Breeds vary in haplotype frequencies but frequencies of resistant genotypes are generally low and consequently selective breeding for scrapie resistance can only be slow but will benefit from animals identified in this study. The unexpectedly high frequency of the K222 haplotype in the Dutch Toggenburger underlines the need for conservation of rare breeds in order to conserve genetic diversity rare or absent in other breeds.

  6. The single surgeon learning curve of laparoscopic liver resection: A continuous evolving process through stepwise difficulties.

    PubMed

    Tomassini, Federico; Scuderi, Vincenzo; Colman, Roos; Vivarelli, Marco; Montalti, Roberto; Troisi, Roberto Ivan

    2016-10-01

    The aim of the study was to evaluate the single-surgeon learning curve (SSLC) in laparoscopic liver surgery over an 11-year period with risk-adjusted (RA) cumulative sum control chart analysis.Laparoscopic liver resection (LLR) is a challenging and highly demanding procedure. No specific data are available for defining the feasibility and reproducibility of the SSLC regarding a consistent and consecutive caseload volume over a specified time period.A total of 319 LLR performed by a single surgeon between June 2003 and May 2014 were retrospectively analyzed. A difficulty scale (DS) ranging from 1 to 10 was created to rate the technical difficulty of each LLR. The risk-adjusted cumulative sum control chart (RA-CUSUM) analysis evaluated conversion rate (CR), operative time (OT) and blood loss (BL). Perioperative morbidity and mortality were also analyzed.The RA-CUSUM analysis of the DS identified 3 different periods: P1 (n = 91 cases), with a mean DS of 3.8; P2 (cases 92-159), with a mean DS of 5.3; and P3 (cases 160-319), with a mean DS of 4.7. P2 presented the highest conversion and morbidity rates with a longer OT, whereas P3 showed the best results (P < 0.001). Fifty cases were needed to achieve a significant decrease in BL. The overall morbidity rate was 13.8%; no perioperative mortality was observed.According to our analysis, at least 160 cases (P3) are needed to complete the SSLC performing safely different types of LLR. A minimum of 50 cases can provide a significant decrease in BL. Based on these findings, a longer learning curve should be anticipated to broaden the indications for LLR.

  7. Current and future antimicrobial treatment of gonorrhoea - the rapidly evolving Neisseria gonorrhoeae continues to challenge.

    PubMed

    Unemo, Magnus

    2015-08-21

    Neisseria gonorrhoeae has developed antimicrobial resistance (AMR) to all drugs previously and currently recommended for empirical monotherapy of gonorrhoea. In vitro resistance, including high-level, to the last option ceftriaxone and sporadic failures to treat pharyngeal gonorrhoea with ceftriaxone have emerged. In response, empirical dual antimicrobial therapy (ceftriaxone 250-1000 mg plus azithromycin 1-2 g) has been introduced in several particularly high-income regions or countries. These treatment regimens appear currently effective and should be considered in all settings where local quality assured AMR data do not support other therapeutic options. However, the dual antimicrobial regimens, implemented in limited geographic regions, will not entirely prevent resistance emergence and, unfortunately, most likely it is only a matter of when, and not if, treatment failures with also these dual antimicrobial regimens will emerge. Accordingly, novel affordable antimicrobials for monotherapy or at least inclusion in new dual treatment regimens, which might need to be considered for all newly developed antimicrobials, are essential. Several of the recently developed antimicrobials deserve increased attention for potential future treatment of gonorrhoea. In vitro activity studies examining collections of geographically, temporally and genetically diverse gonococcal isolates, including multidrug-resistant strains particularly with resistance to ceftriaxone and azithromycin, are important. Furthermore, understanding of effects and biological fitness of current and emerging (in vitro induced/selected and in vivo emerged) genetic resistance mechanisms for these antimicrobials, prediction of resistance emergence, time-kill curve analysis to evaluate antibacterial activity, appropriate mice experiments, and correlates between genetic and phenotypic laboratory parameters, and clinical treatment outcomes, would also be valuable. Subsequently, appropriately designed, randomized controlled clinical trials evaluating efficacy, ideal dose, toxicity, adverse effects, cost, and pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamics data for anogenital and, importantly, also pharyngeal gonorrhoea, i.e. because treatment failures initially emerge at this anatomical site. Finally, in the future treatment at first health care visit will ideally be individually-tailored, i.e. by novel rapid phenotypic AMR tests and/or genetic point of care AMR tests, including detection of gonococci, which will improve the management and public health control of gonorrhoea and AMR. Nevertheless, now is certainly the right time to readdress the challenges of developing a gonococcal vaccine.

  8. Maximizing colonial waterbirds' breeding events using identified ecological thresholds and environmental flow management.

    PubMed

    Bino, Gilad; Steinfeld, Celine; Kingsford, Richard T

    2014-01-01

    Global wetland biodiversity loss continues unabated, driven by increased demand for freshwater. A key strategy for conservation management of freshwater systems is to maintain the quantity and quality of the natural water regimes, including the frequency and timing of flows. Formalizing an ecological model depicting the key ecological components and the underlying processes of cause and effect is required for successful conservation management. Models linking hydrology with ecological responses can prove to be an invaluable tool for robust decision-making of environmental flows. Here, we explored alternative water management strategies and identified maximal strategies for successful long-term management of colonial waterbirds in the Macquarie Marshes, Australia. We modeled fluctuations in breeding abundances of 10 colonial waterbird species over the past quarter century (1986-2010). Clear relationships existed between flows and breeding, both in frequencies and total abundances, with a strong linear relationship for flows > 200 GL. Thresholds emerged for triggering breeding events in all 10 species, but these varied among species. Three species displayed a sharp threshold response between 100 GL and 250 GL. These had a breeding probability of 0.5 when flows were > 180 GL and a 0.9 probability of breeding with flows > 350 GL. The remaining species had a probability greater than 0.5 of breeding with flows > 400 GL. Using developed models, we examined the effects of five environmental flow management strategies on the variability of flows and subsequent likelihood of breeding. Management to different target volumes of environmental flows affected overall and specific breeding probabilities. The likelihood of breeding for all 10 colonial waterbirds increased from a regulated historical mean (+/-SD) of 0.36 +/- 0.09 to 0.53 +/- 0.14, an improvement of 47.5% +/- 18.7%. Management of complex ecosystems depends on good understanding of the responses of organisms to the

  9. Maternal genealogical patterns of chicken breeds sampled in Europe.

    PubMed

    Lyimo, C M; Weigend, A; Msoffe, P L; Hocking, P M; Simianer, H; Weigend, S

    2015-08-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the maternal genealogical pattern of chicken breeds sampled in Europe. Sequence polymorphisms of 1256 chickens of the hypervariable region (D-loop) of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) were used. Median-joining networks were constructed to establish evolutionary relationships among mtDNA haplotypes of chickens, which included a wide range of breeds with different origin and history. Chicken breeds which have had their roots in Europe for more than 3000 years were categorized by their founding regions, encompassing Mediterranean type, East European type and Northwest European type. Breeds which were introduced to Europe from Asia since the mid-19th century were classified as Asian type, and breeds based on crossbreeding between Asian breeds and European breeds were classified as Intermediate type. The last group, Game birds, included fighting birds from Asia. The classification of mtDNA haplotypes was based on Liu et al.'s (2006) nomenclature. Haplogroup E was the predominant clade among the European chicken breeds. The results showed, on average, the highest number of haplotypes, highest haplotype diversity, and highest nucleotide diversity for Asian type breeds, followed by Intermediate type chickens. East European and Northwest European breeds had lower haplotype and nucleotide diversity compared to Mediterranean, Intermediate, Game and Asian type breeds. Results of our study support earlier findings that chicken breeds sampled in Europe have their roots in the Indian subcontinent and East Asia. This is consistent with historical and archaeological evidence of chicken migration routes to Europe.

  10. Genomic predictions for crossbreds from all-breed data

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genomic predictions of transmitting ability (GPTAs) for crossbred animals were computed from marker effects of 5 dairy breeds weighted by each breed’s genomic contribution to the crossbreds. Estimates of genomic breed composition are labeled breed base representation (BBR) and are reported since May...

  11. 50 CFR 15.26 - Approval of cooperative breeding programs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Approval of cooperative breeding programs... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15.26 Approval of cooperative breeding programs. Upon receipt of a complete application, the...

  12. 50 CFR 15.26 - Approval of cooperative breeding programs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Approval of cooperative breeding programs... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15.26 Approval of cooperative breeding programs. Upon receipt of a complete application, the...

  13. 50 CFR 15.26 - Approval of cooperative breeding programs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Approval of cooperative breeding programs... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15.26 Approval of cooperative breeding programs. Upon receipt of a complete application, the...

  14. 50 CFR 15.26 - Approval of cooperative breeding programs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Approval of cooperative breeding programs... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15.26 Approval of cooperative breeding programs. Upon receipt of a complete application, the...

  15. Analysis of an evolving email network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Chaopin; Kuh, Anthony; Wang, Juan; de Wilde, Philippe

    2006-10-01

    In this paper we study an evolving email network model first introduced by Wang and De Wilde, to the best of our knowledge. The model is analyzed by formulating the network topology as a random process and studying the dynamics of the process. Our analytical results show a number of steady state properties about the email traffic between different nodes and the aggregate networking behavior (i.e., degree distribution, clustering coefficient, average path length, and phase transition), and also confirm the empirical results obtained by Wang and De Wilde. We also conducted simulations confirming the analytical results. Extensive simulations were run to evaluate email traffic behavior at the link and network levels, phase transition phenomena, and also studying the behavior of email traffic in a hierarchical network. The methods established here are also applicable to many other practical networks including sensor networks and social networks.

  16. Pulmonary Sporotrichosis: An Evolving Clinical Paradigm.

    PubMed

    Aung, Ar K; Spelman, Denis W; Thompson, Philip J

    2015-10-01

    In recent decades, sporotrichosis, caused by thermally dimorphic fungi Sporothrix schenckii complex, has become an emerging infection in many parts of the world. Pulmonary infection with S. schenckii still remains relatively uncommon, possibly due to underrecognition. Pulmonary sporotrichosis presents with distinct clinical and radiological patterns in both immunocompetent and immunocompromised hosts and can often result in significant morbidity and mortality despite treatment. Current understanding regarding S. schenckii biology, epidemiology, immunopathology, clinical diagnostics, and treatment options has been evolving in the recent years with increased availability of molecular sequencing techniques. However, this changing knowledge has not yet been fully translated into a better understanding of the clinical aspects of pulmonary sporotrichosis, as such current management guidelines remain unsupported by high-level clinical evidence. This article examines recent advances in the knowledge of sporotrichosis and its application to the difficult challenges of managing pulmonary sporotrichosis.

  17. The distances of highly evolved planetary nebulae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phillips, J. P.

    2005-02-01

    The central stars of highly evolved planetary nebulae (PNe) are expected to have closely similar absolute visual magnitudes MV. This enables us to determine approximate distances to these sources where one knows their central star visual magnitudes, and levels of extinction. We find that such an analysis implies values of D which are similar to those determined by Phillips; Cahn, Kaler & Stanghellin; Acker, and Daub. However, our distances are very much smaller than those of Zhang; Bensby & Lundstrom, and van de Steene & Zijlstra. The reasons for these differences are discussed, and can be traced to errors in the assumed relation between brightness temperature and radius. Finally, we determine that the binary companions of such stars can be no brighter than MV~ 6mag, implying a spectral type of K0 or later in the case of main-sequence stars.

  18. Synchronization in evolving snowdrift game model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Y.; Wu, L.; Zhu, S. Q.

    2009-06-01

    The interaction between the evolution of the game and the underlying network structure with evolving snowdrift game model is investigated. The constructed network follows a power-law degree distribution typically showing scale-free feature. The topological features of average path length, clustering coefficient, degree-degree correlations and the dynamical feature of synchronizability are studied. The synchronizability of the constructed networks changes by the interaction. It will converge to a certain value when sufficient new nodes are added. It is found that initial payoffs of nodes greatly affect the synchronizability. When initial payoffs for players are equal, low common initial payoffs may lead to more heterogeneity of the network and good synchronizability. When initial payoffs follow certain distributions, better synchronizability is obtained compared to equal initial payoff. The result is also true for phase synchronization of nonidentical oscillators.

  19. Design Space Issues for Intrinsic Evolvable Hardware

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hereford, James; Gwaltney, David

    2004-01-01

    This paper discuss the problem of increased programming time for intrinsic evolvable hardware (EHW) as the complexity of the circuit grows. We develop equations for the size of the population, n, and the number of generations required for the population to converge, ngen, based on L, the length of the programming string. We show that the processing time of the computer becomes negligible for intrinsic EHW since the selection/crossover/mutation steps are only done once per generation, suggesting there is room for use of more complex evolutionary algorithms m intrinsic EHW. F i y , we review the state of the practice and discuss the notion of a system design approach for intrinsic EHW.

  20. Evolving unipolar memristor spiking neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Howard, David; Bull, Larry; De Lacy Costello, Ben

    2015-10-01

    Neuromorphic computing - brain-like computing in hardware - typically requires myriad complimentary metal oxide semiconductor spiking neurons interconnected by a dense mesh of nanoscale plastic synapses. Memristors are frequently cited as strong synapse candidates due to their statefulness and potential for low-power implementations. To date, plentiful research has focused on the bipolar memristor synapse, which is capable of incremental weight alterations and can provide adaptive self-organisation under a Hebbian learning scheme. In this paper, we consider the unipolar memristor synapse - a device capable of non-Hebbian switching between only two states (conductive and resistive) through application of a suitable input voltage - and discuss its suitability for neuromorphic systems. A self-adaptive evolutionary process is used to autonomously find highly fit network configurations. Experimentation on two robotics tasks shows that unipolar memristor networks evolve task-solving controllers faster than both bipolar memristor networks and networks containing constant non-plastic connections whilst performing at least comparably.

  1. Modelling of the Evolving Stable Boundary Layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sorbjan, Zbigniew

    2014-06-01

    A single-column model of the evolving stable boundary layer (SBL) is tested for self-similar properties of the flow and effects of ambient forcing. The turbulence closure of the model is diagnostic, based on the K-theory approach, with a semi-empirical form of the mixing length, and empirical stability functions of the Richardson number. The model results, expressed in terms of local similarity scales, are universal functions, satisfied in the entire SBL. Based on similarity expression, a realizability condition is derived for the minimum allowable turbulent heat flux in the SBL. Numerical experiments show that the development of "horse-shoe" shaped, fixed-elevation hodographs in the interior of the SBL around sunrise is controlled by effects imposed by surface thermal forcing.

  2. Language as a coordination tool evolves slowly

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Social living ultimately depends on coordination between group members, and communication is necessary to make this possible. We suggest that this might have been the key selection pressure acting on the evolution of language in humans and use a behavioural coordination model to explore the impact of communication efficiency on social group coordination. We show that when language production is expensive but there is an individual benefit to the efficiency with which individuals coordinate their behaviour, the evolution of efficient communication is selected for. Contrary to some views of language evolution, the speed of evolution is necessarily slow because there is no advantage in some individuals evolving communication abilities that much exceed those of the community at large. However, once a threshold competence has been achieved, evolution of higher order language skills may indeed be precipitate. PMID:28083091

  3. Regulatory mechanisms link phenotypic plasticity to evolvability.

    PubMed

    van Gestel, Jordi; Weissing, Franz J

    2016-04-18

    Organisms have a remarkable capacity to respond to environmental change. They can either respond directly, by means of phenotypic plasticity, or they can slowly adapt through evolution. Yet, how phenotypic plasticity links to evolutionary adaptability is largely unknown. Current studies of plasticity tend to adopt a phenomenological reaction norm (RN) approach, which neglects the mechanisms underlying plasticity. Focusing on a concrete question - the optimal timing of bacterial sporulation - we here also consider a mechanistic approach, the evolution of a gene regulatory network (GRN) underlying plasticity. Using individual-based simulations, we compare the RN and GRN approach and find a number of striking differences. Most importantly, the GRN model results in a much higher diversity of responsive strategies than the RN model. We show that each of the evolved strategies is pre-adapted to a unique set of unseen environmental conditions. The regulatory mechanisms that control plasticity therefore critically link phenotypic plasticity to the adaptive potential of biological populations.

  4. Studying evolved stars with Herschel observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    da Silva Santos, João Manuel

    2016-07-01

    A systematic inspection of the far-infrared (FIR) properties of evolved stars allows not only to constrain physical models, but also to understand the chemical evolution that takes place in the end of their lives. In this work we intend to study the circumstellar envelopes (CSE) on a sample of stars in the THROES catalogue from AGB/post-AGB stars to planetary nebulae using photometry and spectroscopy provided by the PACS instrument on-board Herschel telescope. In the first part we are interested in obtaining an estimate of the size of FIR emitting region and to sort our targets in two classes: point-like and extended. Secondly, we focus on the molecular component of the envelope traced by carbon monoxide (CO) rotational lines. We conduct a line survey on a sample of evolved stars by identifying and measuring flux of both 12CO and 13CO isotopologues in the PACS range, while looking at the overall properties of the sample. Lastly, we will be interested in obtaining physical parameters of the CSE, namely gas temperature, mass and mass-loss rate on a sample of carbon stars. For that, we make use of PACS large wavelength coverage, which enables the simultaneous study of a large number of CO transitions, to perform the rotational diagram analysis. We report the detection of CO emission in a high number of stars from the catalogue, which were mostly classified as point-like targets with a few exceptions of planetary nebulae. High J rotational number transitions were detected in a number of targets, revealing the presence of a significant amount of hot gas (T ˜ 400-900 K) and high mass-loss rates. We conclude that Herschel/PACS is in a privileged position to detect a new population of warmer gas, typically missed in sub-mm/mm observations.

  5. Evolving surgical approaches in liver transplantation.

    PubMed

    Petrowsky, Henrik; Busuttil, Ronald W

    2009-02-01

    The growing discrepancy between the need and the availability of donor livers has resulted in evolving surgical approaches in liver transplantation during the last two decades to expand the donor pool. One approach is to transplant partial grafts, obtained either from a living donor or splitting a cadaveric donor liver. For both surgical methods, it is important to obtain a minimal viable graft volume to prevent small-for-size syndrome and graft failure. This minimal volume, expressed as graft-to-whole body ratio, must be between 0.8 and 1%. Living donor liver transplantation (LDLT) became the primary transplant option in many Asian countries and is increasingly performed as an adjunct transplant option in countries with low donation rates. Split liver transplantation (SLT) is a surgical method that creates two allografts from one deceased donor. The most widely used splitting technique is the division of the liver into a left lateral sectoral graft (segments 2 and 3) for a pediatric patient and a right trisegmental graft (segments 1 and 4 to 8) for an adult patient. Both LDLT and SLT are also important and established methods for the treatment of pediatric patients. Another evolving surgical approach is auxiliary liver transplantation, which describes the transplanting a whole or partial graft with preservation of the partial native liver. This bridging technique is applied in patients with fulminate liver failure and should allow the regeneration of the injured liver with the potential to discontinue immunosuppression. Other methods such as xenotransplantation, as well as hepatocyte and stem cell transplantation, are promising approaches that are still in experimental phases.

  6. How evolved psychological mechanisms empower cultural group selection.

    PubMed

    Henrich, Joseph; Boyd, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Driven by intergroup competition, social norms, beliefs, and practices can evolve in ways that more effectively tap into a wide variety of evolved psychological mechanisms to foster group-beneficial behavior. The more powerful such evolved mechanisms are, the more effectively culture can potentially harness and manipulate them to generate greater phenotypic variation across groups, thereby fueling cultural group selection.

  7. The development and application of the modern reproductive technologies to horse breeding.

    PubMed

    Allen, W R

    2005-08-01

    Although the horse was probably the first animal to experience and benefit from artificial insemination, it trailed the field somewhat with regard to the application of embryo transfer and other oocyte and embryo-related modern breeding technologies. But with a late run it is now back in mid-field and gaining fast on the other large domestic species in the application of the many technological advances of the past 20 years to sound breeding practice. Improvements in extenders and cryoprotectants have resulted in a veritable upsurge in the transport and insemination of cooled and frozen stallion semen, and parallel improvements in ovulation induction and synchrony, exogenous gonadotrophic stimulation of multiple fertile ovulations and simplified, more efficient methods for non-surgical transfer of embryos to recipient mares, coupled with relaxation of breed society registration restrictions, have together contributed to a similar upsurge in the application of embryo transfer to all breeds and athletic types of horses worldwide, with the continuing and notable exception of the Thoroughbred. Although conventional in vitro fertilization remains something of an unjumped fence in equids, other modern breeding technologies like hysteroscopic low-dose insemination, fluorescence-activated sex sorting of stallion spermatozoa, between-species embryo transfer, embryo freezing and bisection, transvaginal ultrasound-guided oocyte collection, intracytoplasmic sperm injection for fertilization (ICSI), gamete intrafallopian transfer (GIFT) and now nuclear transfer (cloning), have all been applied to equids with encouraging success. Cloning, especially, holds enormous promise for the Sporthorse industry to re-create champion geldings in stallion form for breeding purposes.

  8. Long-term climate impacts on breeding bird phenology in Pennsylvania, USA.

    PubMed

    McDermott, Molly E; DeGroote, Lucas W

    2016-10-01

    Climate change is influencing bird phenology worldwide, but we still lack information on how many species are responding over long temporal periods. We assessed how climate affected passerine reproductive timing and productivity at a constant effort mist-netting station in western Pennsylvania using a model comparison approach. Several lines of evidence point to the sensitivity of 21 breeding passerines to climate change over five decades. The trends for temperature and precipitation over 53 years were slightly positive due to intraseasonal variation, with the greatest temperature increases and precipitation declines in early spring. Regardless of broodedness, migration distance, or breeding season, 13 species hatched young earlier over time with most advancing >3 days per decade. Warm springs were associated with earlier captures of juveniles for 14 species, ranging from 1- to 3-day advancement for every 1 °C increase. This timing was less likely to be influenced by spring precipitation; nevertheless, higher rainfall was usually associated with later appearance of juveniles and breeding condition in females. Temperature and precipitation were positively related to productivity for seven and eleven species, respectively, with negative relations evident for six and eight species. We found that birds fledged young earlier with increasing spring temperatures, potentially benefiting some multibrooded species. Indeed, some extended the duration of breeding in these warm years. Yet, a few species fledged fewer juveniles in warmer and wetter seasons, indicating that expected future increases could be detrimental to locally breeding populations. Although there were no clear relationships between life history traits and breeding phenology, species-specific responses to climate found in our study provide novel insights into phenological flexibility in songbirds. Our research underscores the value of long-term monitoring studies and the importance of continuing constant

  9. Breeding bird response to juniper woodland expansion

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rosenstock, Steven S.; van Riper, Charles

    2001-01-01

    In recent times, pinyon (Pinus spp.)-juniper (Juniperus spp.) woodlands have expanded into large portions of the Southwest historically occupied by grassland vegetation. From 1997a??1998, we studied responses of breeding birds to one-seed juniper (J. monosperma) woodland expansion at 2 grassland study areas in northern Arizona. We sampled breeding birds in 3 successional stages along a grassland-woodland gradient: un-invaded grassland, grassland undergoing early stages of juniper establishment, and developing woodland. Species composition varied greatly among successional stages and was most different between endpoints of the gradient. Ground-nesting grassland species predominated in uninvaded grassland but declined dramatically as tree density increased. Tree- and cavity-nesting species increased with tree density and were most abundant in developing woodland. Restoration of juniper-invaded grasslands will benefit grassland-obligate birds and other wildlife.

  10. Breeding population inventories and measures of recruitment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cowardin, L.M.; Blohm, R.J.; Batt, D.J.; Afton, A.D.; Anderson, M.G.; Ankney, C.D.; Johnson, D.H.; Kadlec, J.A.; Krapu, G.L.

    1992-01-01

    In this chapter we review the techniques used to measure two important parameters of waterfowl populations, size of breeding population and recruitment. If waterfowl are to be managed toward goals defined in terms of population sizes such as those in the recently signed North American Waterfowl Management Plan (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service [USFWS] and Canadian Wildlife Service [CWS] 1986), there must be some measure of population size for the various species. Waterfowl managers usually measure population size during the breeding season, although for some species and in some areas winter inventories may be used. Population size is a function of natality and mortality. Other chapters in this volume deal in detail with the biology of those processes. This chapter discusses procedural aspects of measurement and reviews some of the operational systems that have been used to estimate population size and recruitment, especially in North America.

  11. Determinants of breeding distributions of ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, D.H.; Grier, J.W.

    1988-01-01

    The settling of breeding habitat by migratory waterfowl is a topic of both theoretical and practical interest. We use the results of surveys conducted annually during 1955-81 in major breeding areas to examine the factors that affect the distributions of 10 common North American duck species. Three patterns of settling are described: homing, opportunistic, and flexible. Homing is generally more pronounced among species that use more stable (more predictable) wetlands, such as the redhead (Aythya americana), canvasback (A. valisineria), lesser scaup (A. affinis), mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), gadwall (Anas strepera), and northern shoveler (Anas clypeata). Opportunistic settling is more prevalent among species that use less stable (less predictable) wetlands, such as northern pintail (Anas acuta) and blue-winged teal (Anas discors). Flexible settling is exhibited to various degrees by most species.The 10 species are shown to fall along a natural ordination reflecting different life history characteristics. Average values of indices of r- and K-selection indicated that pintail, mallard, blue-winged teal, and shoveler have the most features associated with unstable or unpredictable environments. Gadwall, American wigeon (Anas americana), and green-winged teal (Anas crecca) were intermediate, and attributes of the diving ducks were associated with the use of stable or predictable environments.Some species--notably mallard, gadwall, blue-winged teal, redhead, and canvasback--tend to fill available breeding habitat first in the central portions of their range, and secondly in peripheral areas. Other species--American wigeon, green-winged teal, northern shoveler, northern pintail, and lesser scaup--fill their habitat in the order it is encountered during spring migration.Age and sex classes within species vary in their settling pattern. Some of this variation can be predicted from the mating systems of ducks in which breeding females, especially successful ones, have a

  12. Short term, repeated exposure to rams during the transition into the breeding season improves the synchrony of mating in the breeding season.

    PubMed

    Hawken, P A R; Evans, A C O; Beard, A P

    2008-07-01

    The ram effect is widely used in Mediterranean breeds of sheep but its use in temperate genotypes is restricted by breed seasonality. However, ewes from these highly seasonal genotypes are sensitive to stimulation by rams close to the onset of the natural breeding season. In this study we developed a pre-mating protocol of repeated, short-term exposure to rams (fence-line contact or vasectomised rams) beginning during late anoestrus and continuing into the breeding season. We hypothesised that this pre-mating protocol would synchronise the distribution of mating of North of England Mule ewes during the breeding season above that observed in ewes isolated from rams prior to mating. Ram-exposed ewes were given contact with rams (Experiment 1: fence-line; FR, n=94 and Experiment 2: vasectomised rams; VR; n=103) for 24h on Days 0 (10 September), 17 and 34 of the experiment. Control ewes (Experiment 1; FC, n=98 and Experiment 2; VC; n=106) remained isolated from rams prior to mating. In Experiment 2, a subset of VR (n=35) and VC ewes (n=35) were blood sampled twice weekly to monitor their pre-mating progesterone profiles. At mating, harnessed entire rams were introduced, 17 or 16 days after the last ram exposure (Experiments 1 and 2) and raddle marks were recorded daily. The median time from ram introduction to mating was reduced in ewes given both fence-line and vasectomised ram contact (P<0.001), leading to a more compact distribution of mating and lambing (At least P<0.01). In the blood sampled VR ewes, there was a progressive decline in the number of days from ram exposure to the onset of dioestrus (at least P<0.05). This observation indicates that the cycles in VR ewes became increasingly synchronised over the pre-mating period, a pattern not evident in VC ewes. In conclusion, repeated, short-term exposure of ewes to rams during the transition into the breeding season is an effective method of synchronising the distribution of mating during the breeding season.

  13. Breeding ecology of the Puaiohi (Myadestes palmeri)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Snetsinger, T.J.; Herrmann, C.M.; Holmes, D.E.; Hayward, C.D.; Fancy, S.G.

    2005-01-01

    We studied the breeding ecology of the critically endangered Puaiohi (Myadestes palmeri), a poorly known Hawaiian thrush endemic to the island of Kauai. From 1996 through 1998, we monitored 96 active nests over the course of three breeding seasons. Mean clutch size was 2.0, and pairs produced an average of 1.5 fledglings/successful nest. Pairs renested after failure and some raised multiple broods. The mean annual reproductive effort was 2.1 nesting attempts/territory, and pairs produced a mean 1.1 fledglings/attempt. Large differences in nesting effort and productivity occurred among years, with mean number of fledglings/territory ranging from 0.4 to 4.9. Predation by owls (probably Short-eared Owls, Asia flammeus) and introduced rats (probably black rats, Rattus rattus) accounted for most nest failures. The presence of non-breeding floaters in the population and their largely unsuccessful attempts to gain territories in the study area suggest that the population is near carrying capacity. The high reproductive potential of the Puaiohi may help explain its persistence despite the species' historical rarity.

  14. Reproductive senescence in a cooperatively breeding mammal.

    PubMed

    Sharp, Stuart P; Clutton-Brock, Tim H

    2010-01-01

    1. Senescence (or 'ageing') is a widespread and important process in wild animal populations, but variation in ageing patterns within and between species is poorly understood. 2. In cooperatively breeding species, the costs of reproduction are shared between breeders and one or more helpers. The effects of ageing in breeders may therefore be moderated by the presence of helpers, but there have been very few studies of senescence patterns in natural populations of cooperative breeders. 3. Here, we use 13 years of data from a long-term study population of wild meerkats (Suricata suricatta) to investigate age-related changes in several traits known to be key components of reproductive success in females of this species. 4. Four of the six traits studied exhibited significant declines with age, indicating senescence. Litter size, the number of litters produced per year and the number of pups that survived to emergence from the natal burrow per year all increased with female age up to a peak at c. 4 years, and declined steeply thereafter; the mean pup weight at emergence in a given litter declined steadily from age zero. 5. These results provide the first evidence of reproductive senescence in a wild population of a cooperatively breeding vertebrate. Breeding success declined with age despite the sharing of reproductive costs in this species, but further study is needed to investigate whether helping affects other aspects of senescence, including survival.

  15. The development of beef breeding bulls.

    PubMed

    Engelken, T J

    2008-08-01

    Management of the bull battery will have a dramatic impact on profitability of the cow/calf enterprise. It is critical that young bulls be selected and developed to maximize longevity and productivity for the eventual buyer. Bulls must be structurally sound, healthy, and have adequate libido in order to service the required number of females. Once bulls complete their first breeding season, special care must be taken in order to ensure that they recover and regain needed body condition and pass a bull breeding soundness examination (BBSE). Mature bulls that have reached their genetic potential for growth require less intensive management, but the health program and annual BBSE cannot be overlooked. Mature bulls are also more likely to carry venereal disease and should be screened according to local disease incidence and state regulations. All bulls, regardless of age, should be observed early during the breeding season to ensure that they are physically capable of mounting and servicing females. The establishment of a complete management program, especially for young bulls, is essential to ensure that ranch resources are used efficiently, including maintenance of a high level of reproductive performance of the cow herd.

  16. Bull breeding soundness evaluation in Southern Africa.

    PubMed

    Irons, P C; Nöthling, J O; Bertschinger, H J

    2007-10-01

    The motivation for and process leading up to the publication of a new bull breeding soundness certification standard endorsed by the South African Veterinary Association is described. The veterinary certificate of bull breeding soundness and explanatory notes and minimum standards are shown. The first component of the certificate is a declaration by the veterinarian that the bull complies with the minimum standards set for examinations for the selected purpose, these being for use as a natural service sire, as a donor of semen for distribution, and for insurance purposes. This is followed by the details of the bull and owner, and a list of the recommended examinations and tests for the bull with provision for which were performed. Certificates are available in book form with the explanatory notes and minimum standards on the reverse, and a carbon copy which remains in the book. The clarity and ease of completion of the document are regarded as being positive features. Bulls are either classified as breeding sound or not, with no actual parameters indicated on the document and no certificate issued for those which do not meet the set criteria. Contact details of the parties involved are shown on the certificate to allow for communication as a means of avoiding disputes.

  17. The northeastern states' waterfowl breeding population survey

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Heusmann, H.W.; Sauer, J.R.

    2000-01-01

    Efforts to tailor waterfowl hunting regulations to conditions in the Atlantic Flyway have been hampered by lack of information on local breeding populations. The Atlantic Flyway Council's technical section voted at its 1987 winter meeting (Atlantic Flyway Council Technical Section, Toronto, Canada) to establish a regional waterfowl breeding survey. Consequently, an annual survey was started in 1989 and further refined in 1993 using results from 1989 to 1992. During 1993-1997, annual spring surveys of more than 1,450 randomly selected 1-km2 plots, stratified by physiographic strata, were conducted in the Atlantic Flyway from New Hampshire to Virginia to estimate breeding populations of mallards (Arias platyrhynchos), American black ducks (A. rubripes), wood ducks (Aix sponsa), and Canada geese (Branta canadensis). Ground crews systematically surveyed all potential waterfowl habitat for these species in each plot. The adjusted mean mallard pair estimate over the 5-year period was 375,962 (range 310,299-415,182, mean SE 25,761) for the region surveyed. The estimate for black duck pairs was 31,1 54 (range 27,164'37,521, mean SE 4,978), and for wood duck pairs it was 240,473 (range 218,959-281,916, mean SE 25,408). Total number of Canada geese increased from 526,663 in 1993 to 892,278 in 1997. Population estimates for other species had unacceptably large standard errors.

  18. Detection of Breeding Blankets Using Antineutrinos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cogswell, Bernadette; Huber, Patrick

    2016-03-01

    The Plutonium Management and Disposition Agreement between the United States and Russia makes arrangements for the disposal of 34 metric tons of excess weapon-grade plutonium. Under this agreement Russia plans to dispose of its excess stocks by processing the plutonium into fuel for fast breeder reactors. To meet the disposition requirements this fuel would be burned while the fast reactors are run as burners, i.e., without a natural uranium blanket that can be used to breed plutonium surrounding the core. This talk discusses the potential application of antineutrino monitoring to the verification of the presence or absence of a breeding blanket. It is found that a 36 kg antineutrino detector, exploiting coherent elastic neutrino-nucleus scattering and made of silicon, could determine the presence of a breeding blanket at a liquid sodium cooled fast reactor at the 95% confidence level within 90 days. Such a detector would be a novel non-intrusive verification tool and could present a first application of coherent elastic neutrino-nucleus scattering to a real-world challenge.

  19. The North American Breeding Bird Survey

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bystrak, D.; Ralph, C. John; Scott, J. Michael

    1981-01-01

    A brief history of the North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) and a discussion of the technique are presented. The approximately 2000 random roadside routes conducted yearly during the breeding season throughout North America produce an enormous bank of data on distribution and abundance of breeding birds with great potential use. Data on about one million total birds of 500 species per year are on computer tape to facilitate accessibility and are available to any serious investigator. The BBS includes the advantages of wide geographic coverage, sampling of most habitat types, standardization of data collection, and a relatively simple format. The Survey is limited by placement of roads (e.g., marshes and rugged mountainous areas are not well sampled), traffic noise interference in some cases and preference of some bird species for roadside habitats. These and other problems and biases of the BBS are discussed. The uniformity of the technique allows for detecting changes in populations and for creation of maps of relative abundance. Examples of each are presented.

  20. Breeding quantum error-correcting codes

    SciTech Connect

    Dong Ying; Hu Dan; Yu Sixia

    2010-02-15

    The stabilizer code, one major family of quantum error-correcting codes (QECC), is specified by the joint eigenspace of a commuting set of Pauli observables. It turns out that noncommuting sets of Pauli observables can be used to construct more efficient QECCs, such as the entanglement-assisted QECCs, which are built directly from any linear classical codes whose detailed properties are needed to determine the parameters of the resulting quantum codes. Here we propose another family of QECCs, namely, the breeding QECCs, that also employ noncommuting sets of Pauli observables and can be built from any classical additive codes, either linear or nonlinear, with the advantage that their parameters can be read off directly from the corresponding classical codes. Besides, since nonlinear codes are generally more efficient than linear codes, our breeding codes have better parameters than those codes built from linear codes. The terminology is justified by the fact that our QECCs are related to the ordinary QECCs in exactly the same way that the breeding protocols are related to the hashing protocols in the entanglement purification.

  1. Why breed every other year? The case of albatrosses.

    PubMed

    Jouventin, Pierre; Dobson, F Stephen

    2002-09-22

    Albatrosses exhibit extremely low reproductive rates, each pair brooding only one egg and subsequent chick at a time. Furthermore, in several of the species, the majority of successful pairs breed only once every second year (termed 'biennial' breeding). Thus, on average, these latter species have an annual fecundity of about half an offspring per year, while other albatrosses produce an egg and chick every year. Using our 40-year bank of demographic data, we compared 12 species of albatrosses according to these two breeding strategies to examine potential causes of biennial breeding. Biennial breeding could be due to physiological constraints, larger animals breeding more slowly, or ecological constraints, more distant pelagic feeding trips being energetically costly, or both. We tested these hypotheses by looking for predicted associations between the duration of the rearing period, the distance to the oceanic feeding zone and breeding frequency. We also looked for associations of these variables with other life-history traits. Body size had a strong influence on the duration of the rearing period, but not on the distance that birds travelled to the feeding zone. Both the duration of the rearing period and distance to the feeding zone appeared to have direct influences on breeding frequency, as revealed by a path analysis, and thus both hypotheses to explain biennial breeding were supported. Finally, breeding frequency exhibited a strong trade-off with adult survival and age at maturity, indicating that slower breeders live through more breeding seasons, perhaps mitigating their lower annual reproductive output.

  2. Why breed every other year? The case of albatrosses.

    PubMed Central

    Jouventin, Pierre; Dobson, F Stephen

    2002-01-01

    Albatrosses exhibit extremely low reproductive rates, each pair brooding only one egg and subsequent chick at a time. Furthermore, in several of the species, the majority of successful pairs breed only once every second year (termed 'biennial' breeding). Thus, on average, these latter species have an annual fecundity of about half an offspring per year, while other albatrosses produce an egg and chick every year. Using our 40-year bank of demographic data, we compared 12 species of albatrosses according to these two breeding strategies to examine potential causes of biennial breeding. Biennial breeding could be due to physiological constraints, larger animals breeding more slowly, or ecological constraints, more distant pelagic feeding trips being energetically costly, or both. We tested these hypotheses by looking for predicted associations between the duration of the rearing period, the distance to the oceanic feeding zone and breeding frequency. We also looked for associations of these variables with other life-history traits. Body size had a strong influence on the duration of the rearing period, but not on the distance that birds travelled to the feeding zone. Both the duration of the rearing period and distance to the feeding zone appeared to have direct influences on breeding frequency, as revealed by a path analysis, and thus both hypotheses to explain biennial breeding were supported. Finally, breeding frequency exhibited a strong trade-off with adult survival and age at maturity, indicating that slower breeders live through more breeding seasons, perhaps mitigating their lower annual reproductive output. PMID:12350259

  3. Study of cell kinetics within evolving secondary Haversian systems.

    PubMed Central

    Jaworski, Z F; Hooper, C

    1980-01-01

    A study of the origin, proliferation rate and migration of cells within the secondary evolving Haversian systems was undertaken in young adult Beagle dogs. Autoradiographs of serial longitudinal sections prepared from rib biopsies taken from one hour to eleven days after the injection of tritiated thymidine were subjected to semiquantitative analysis as to the time of appearance, number, location and transformation of various labelled cells. Numerous labelled osteoblasts appeared early (at 14-24 hours) in the most proximal closing cone. With time, this zone was seen to have been left behind the advancing cutting cone and the successive generations of osteoblasts. The first labelled osteocytes were seen at nine days after injection, in the distal closing cone. Labelled nuclei within the osteoclasts were few and appeared late (none before 24 hours). It is apparent that each self renewing cell population within these systems (i.e. osteoclasts, osteoblasts and endothelial cells) derives from its own immediate precursor and evolves at its own speed. The mononuclear osteoclasts' precursors divide locally and infrequently and the turnover of osteoclastic nuclei appears to be slow; consequently their life span and that of the osteoclasts appears to be longer than the time of the observation, i.e. 11 days. The proliferation of osteoblasts' precursors and osteoblasts recruitment is rapid. The life span of osteoblasts was found to be indeterminate; some osteoblasts may become osteocytes within a few days while others may continue to deposit bone for several weeks. Since the recruitment of osteoclastic nuclei is slow while that of the osteoblasts is fast, it is unlikely that the osteoclasts in the sites of lamellar bone remodelling modulate into osteoblasts. Images Fig. 2(cont.) Fig. 2 Fig. 3(cont.) Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 PMID:7440406

  4. NASA's Space Launch System: An Evolving Capability for Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robinson, Kimberly F.; Hefner, Keith; Hitt, David

    2015-01-01

    Designed to enable human space exploration missions, including eventually landings on Mars, NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) represents a unique launch capability with a wide range of utilization opportunities, from delivering habitation systems into the "proving ground" of lunar-vicinity space to enabling high-energy transits through the outer solar system. Substantial progress has been made toward the first launch of the initial configuration of SLS, which will be able to deliver more than 70 metric tons of payload into low Earth orbit (LEO). Preparations are also underway to evolve the vehicle into more powerful configurations, culminating with the capability to deliver more than 130 metric tons to LEO. Even the initial configuration of SLS will be able to deliver greater mass to orbit than any contemporary launch vehicle, and the evolved configuration will have greater performance than the Saturn V rocket that enabled human landings on the moon. SLS will also be able to carry larger payload fairings than any contemporary launch vehicle, and will offer opportunities for co-manifested and secondary payloads. Because of its substantial mass-lift capability, SLS will also offer unrivaled departure energy, enabling mission profiles currently not possible. The basic capabilities of SLS have been driven by studies on the requirements of human deep-space exploration missions, and continue to be validated by maturing analysis of Mars mission options, including the Global Exploration Roadmap. Early collaboration with science teams planning future decadal-class missions have contributed to a greater understanding of the vehicle's potential range of utilization. As SLS draws closer to its first launch, the Program is maturing concepts for future capability upgrades, which could begin being available within a decade. These upgrades, from multiple unique payload accommodations to an upper stage providing more power for inspace propulsion, have ramifications for a variety of

  5. The evolving quality of frictional contact with graphene.

    PubMed

    Li, Suzhi; Li, Qunyang; Carpick, Robert W; Gumbsch, Peter; Liu, Xin Z; Ding, Xiangdong; Sun, Jun; Li, Ju

    2016-11-24

    Graphite and other lamellar materials are used as dry lubricants for macroscale metallic sliding components and high-pressure contacts. It has been shown experimentally that monolayer graphene exhibits higher friction than multilayer graphene and graphite, and that this friction increases with continued sliding, but the mechanism behind this remains subject to debate. It has long been conjectured that the true contact area between two rough bodies controls interfacial friction. The true contact area, defined for example by the number of atoms within the range of interatomic forces, is difficult to visualize directly but characterizes the quantity of contact. However, there is emerging evidence that, for a given pair of materials, the quality of the contact can change, and that this can also strongly affect interfacial friction. Recently, it has been found that the frictional behaviour of two-dimensional materials exhibits traits unlike those of conventional bulk materials. This includes the abovementioned finding that for few-layer two-dimensional materials the static friction force gradually strengthens for a few initial atomic periods before reaching a constant value. Such transient behaviour, and the associated enhancement of steady-state friction, diminishes as the number of two-dimensional layers increases, and was observed only when the two-dimensional material was loosely adhering to a substrate. This layer-dependent transient phenomenon has not been captured by any simulations. Here, using atomistic simulations, we reproduce the experimental observations of layer-dependent friction and transient frictional strengthening on graphene. Atomic force analysis reveals that the evolution of static friction is a manifestation of the natural tendency for thinner and less-constrained graphene to re-adjust its configuration as a direct consequence of its greater flexibility. That is, the tip atoms become more strongly pinned, and show greater synchrony in their stick

  6. The different breeding strategies of penguins: a review.

    PubMed

    Ancel, André; Beaulieu, Michaël; Gilbert, Caroline

    2013-01-01

    The 18 penguin species are exclusively and widely distributed in the Southern hemisphere, from the Equator to the Antarctic continent, and are thus submitted to various ecological constraints in their reproductive strategy. This results in a high variability in all aspects of the breeding biology of the different species. Although penguins appear primarily adapted for a marine existence, they remain dependent on land for breeding, rearing young, and moulting. Here we describe and compare the breeding cycle of all the penguin species, highlighting the characteristics of each species in terms of breeding range, population status, threats induced by environmental changes, duration of the different phases of the breeding cycle, mate fidelity, body mass, body height, egg mass and duration of egg formation. We also focus on the breeding cycle of the genus Aptenodytes, since it largely differs from the breeding cycle of most of the other penguin species.

  7. Life histories and the evolution of cooperative breeding in mammals.

    PubMed

    Lukas, Dieter; Clutton-Brock, Tim

    2012-10-07

    While the evolution of cooperative breeding systems (where non-breeding helpers participate in rearing young produced by dominant females) has been restricted to lineages with socially monogamous mating systems where coefficients of relatedness between group members are usually high, not all monogamous lineages have produced species with cooperative breeding systems, suggesting that other factors constrain the evolution of cooperative breeding. Previous studies have suggested that life-history parameters, including longevity, may constrain the evolution of cooperative breeding. Here, we show that transitions to cooperative breeding across the mammalian phylogeny have been restricted to lineages where females produce multiple offspring per birth. We find no support for effects of longevity or of other life-history parameters. We suggest that the evolution of cooperative breeding has been restricted to monogamous lineages where helpers have the potential to increase the reproductive output of breeders.

  8. Colombian Creole horse breeds: Same origin but different diversity

    PubMed Central

    Jimenez, Ligia Mercedes; Mendez, Susy; Dunner, Susana; Cañón, Javier; Cortés, Óscar

    2012-01-01

    In order to understand the genetic ancestry and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) diversity of current Colombian horse breeds we sequenced a 364-bp fragment of the mitocondrial DNA D-loop in 116 animals belonging to five Spanish horse breeds and the Colombian Paso Fino and Colombian Creole cattle horse breeds. Among Colombian horse breeds, haplogroup D had the highest frequency (53%), followed by haplogroups A (19%), C (8%) and F (6%). The higher frequency of haplogroup D in Colombian horse breeds supports the theory of an ancestral Iberian origin for these breeds. These results also indicate that different selective pressures among the Colombian breeds could explain the relatively higher genetic diversity found in the Colombian Creole cattle horse when compared with the Colombian Paso Fino. PMID:23271940

  9. Spatial scale of local breeding habitat quality and adjustment of breeding decisions.

    PubMed

    Doligez, Blandine; Berthouly, Anne; Doligez, Damien; Tanner, Marion; Saladin, Verena; Bonfils, Danielle; Richner, Heinz

    2008-05-01

    Experimental studies provide evidence that, in spatially and temporally heterogeneous environments, individuals track variation in breeding habitat quality to adjust breeding decisions to local conditions. However, most experiments consider environmental variation at one spatial scale only, while the ability to detect the influence of a factor depends on the scale of analysis. We show that different breeding decisions by adults are based on information about habitat quality at different spatial scales. We manipulated (increased or decreased) local breeding habitat quality through food availability and parasite prevalence at a small (territory) and a large (patch) scale simultaneously in a wild population of Great Tits (Parus major). Females laid earlier in high-quality large-scale patches, but laying date did not depend on small-scale territory quality. Conversely, offspring sex ratio was higher (i.e., biased toward males) in high-quality, small-scale territories but did not depend on large-scale patch quality. Clutch size and territory occupancy probability did not depend on our experimental manipulation of habitat quality, but territories located at the edge of patches were more likely to be occupied than central territories. These results suggest that integrating different decisions taken by breeders according to environmental variation at different spatial scales is required to understand patterns of breeding strategy adjustment.

  10. Hormones and territorial behavior during breeding in snow buntings (Plectrophenax nivalis): an Arctic-breeding songbird.

    PubMed

    Romero, L M; Soma, K K; O'Reilly, K M; Suydam, R; Wingfield, J C

    1998-02-01

    We examined hormonal profiles and behavior associated with maintaining a single-purpose territory in an Arctic-breeding songbird-the snow bunting (Plectrophenax nivalis). Snow buntings differ from many other Arctic-breeding passerines by using nest cavities, an uncommon and defended resource, but not relying upon the surrounding territory for forage. Circulating levels of testosterone in males were high when territories were established and then decreased over the breeding season. LH secretion was enhanced in females while laying eggs, followed by detectable levels of estradiol during incubation. Both sexes showed equivalent corticosterone responses to the stress of being captured and held. Male snow buntings vigorously defended territories in response to a simulated territorial intrusion both when initiating breeding and when feeding young. Exogenous testosterone implants surprisingly inhibited physical aggression but enhanced singing when birds were feeding young, thus suggesting that song and physical aggression are mediated by different hormonal mechanisms at this time of year. Together, these results contrast with hormonal profiles and behavior in other Arctic-breeding passerines.

  11. Specificity of genome evolution in experimental populations of Escherichia coli evolved at different temperatures

    PubMed Central

    Deatherage, Daniel E.; Kepner, Jamie L.; Bennett, Albert F.; Lenski, Richard E.; Barrick, Jeffrey E.

    2017-01-01

    Isolated populations derived from a common ancestor are expected to diverge genetically and phenotypically as they adapt to different local environments. To examine this process, 30 populations of Escherichia coli were evolved for 2,000 generations, with six in each of five different thermal regimes: constant 20 °C, 32 °C, 37 °C, 42 °C, and daily alternations between 32 °C and 42 °C. Here, we sequenced the genomes of one endpoint clone from each population to test whether the history of adaptation in different thermal regimes was evident at the genomic level. The evolved strains had accumulated ∼5.3 mutations, on average, and exhibited distinct signatures of adaptation to the different environments. On average, two strains that evolved under the same regime exhibited ∼17% overlap in which genes were mutated, whereas pairs that evolved under different conditions shared only ∼4%. For example, all six strains evolved at 32 °C had mutations in nadR, whereas none of the other 24 strains did. However, a population evolved at 37 °C for an additional 18,000 generations eventually accumulated mutations in the signature genes strongly associated with adaptation to the other temperature regimes. Two mutations that arose in one temperature treatment tended to be beneficial when tested in the others, although less so than in the regime in which they evolved. These findings demonstrate that genomic signatures of adaptation can be highly specific, even with respect to subtle environmental differences, but that this imprint may become obscured over longer timescales as populations continue to change and adapt to the shared features of their environments. PMID:28202733

  12. Breeding pond selection and movement patterns by eastern spadefoot toads (Scaphiopus holbrookii) in relation to weather and edaphic conditions.

    SciTech Connect

    Cathryn H. Greenberg; George W. Tanner

    2004-08-31

    Cathryn H. Greenberg and George W. Tanner. 2004. Breeding pond selection and movement patterns by eastern spadefoot toads (Scaphiopus holbrookii) in relation to weather and edaphic conditions. J. Herp. 38(4):569-577. Abstract: Eastern Spadefoot Toads (Scaphiopus holbrookii) require fish-free, isolated, ephemeral ponds for breeding but otherwise inhabit the surrounding uplands, commonly xeric longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) wiregrass (Aristida beyrichiana). Hence both pond and upland conditions can potentially affect their breeding biology, and population persistence. Hardwood invasion due to fire suppression in sandhills could alter upland and pond suitability by higher hardwood density and increased transpiration. In this paper we explore breeding and neonatal emigration movements in relation to weather, hydrological conditions of ponds, and surrounding upland matrices. We use 9 years of data from continuous monitoring with drift fences and pitfall traps at 8 ephemeral ponds in 2 upland matrices: regularly-burned, savanna-like sandhills (n = 4), and hardwood-invaded sandhills (n = 4). Neither adult nor neonate captures differed between ponds within the 2 upland matrices, suggesting that they are tolerant of upland heterogeneity created by fire frequency. Explosive breeding occurred during 9 periods and in all seasons; adults were captured rarely otherwise. At a landscape-level rainfall, maximum change in barometric pressure, and an interaction between those 2 variables were significant predictors of explosive breeding. At a pond-level, rainfall, change in pond depth during the month prior to breeding, and days since a pond was last dry were significant predictors of adult captures. Transformation date, rather than weather, was associated with neonatal emigrations, which usually were complete within a week. Movement by first-captured adults and neonates was directional, but adult emigrations were apparently not always toward their origin. Our results suggest that

  13. swinger: a user-friendly computer program to establish captive breeding groups that minimize relatedness without pedigree information.

    PubMed

    Sandoval-Castillo, Jonathan; Attard, Catherine R M; Marri, Shashikanth; Brauer, Chris J; Möller, Luciana M; Beheregaray, Luciano B

    2017-03-01

    Captive breeding programmes are often a necessity for the continued persistence of a population or species. They typically have the goal of maintaining genetic diversity and minimizing inbreeding. However, most captive breeding programmes have been based on the assumption that the founding breeders are unrelated and outbred, even though in situ anthropogenic impacts often mean these founders may have high relatedness and substantial inbreeding. In addition, polygamous group-breeding species in captivity often have uncertain pedigrees, making it difficult to select the group composition for subsequent breeding. Molecular-based estimates of relatedness and inbreeding may instead be used to select breeding groups (≥two individuals) that minimize relatedness and filter out inbred individuals. swinger constructs breeding groups based on molecular estimates of relatedness and inbreeding. The number of possible combinations of breeding groups quickly becomes intractable by hand. swinger was designed to overcome this major issue in ex situ conservation biology. The user can specify parameters within swinger to reach breeding solutions that suit the mating system of the target species and available resources. We provide evidence of the efficiency of the software with an empirical example and using simulations. The only data required are a typical molecular marker data set, such as a microsatellite or SNP data set, from which estimates of inbreeding and pairwise relatedness may be obtained. Such molecular data sets are becoming easier to gather from non-model organisms with next-generation sequencing technology. swinger is an open-source software with a user-friendly interface and is available at http://www.molecularecology.flinders.edu.au/molecular-ecology-lab/software/swinger/swinger/ and https://github.com/Yuma248/Swinger.

  14. The Moroccan Educational Context: Evolving Multilingualism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Daniel, Mayra C.; Ball, Alexis

    2010-01-01

    This article begins an investigation of the educational system of Morocco and its context of language diversity. It examines the Moroccan cultural environment and the ways the multilingualism and education of its people has been and continues to be influenced by geography, colonization periods, religion, and history. The effects of the Educational…

  15. Origins and genetic diversity of British cattle breeds in Brazil assessed by pedigree analyses.

    PubMed

    Piccoli, M L; Braccini Neto, J; Brito, F V; Campos, L T; Bértoli, C D; Campos, G S; Cobuci, J A; McManus, C M; Barcellos, J O J; Gama, L T

    2014-05-01

    genes were mostly from Uruguay, but since then the United States took the leading role as supplier of ANG, HER, and SHO genes to Brazil. Our results reveal a mild increase in inbreeding in all breeds studied, with effective population size estimates indicating that reasonable levels of genetic diversity have been maintained in all 4 breeds. Continuous monitoring of inbreeding trends and of parameters derived from probability of gene origin should be ensured to warrant the long-term maintenance of genetic diversity.

  16. Deliberation in the motor system: reflex gains track evolving evidence leading to a decision.

    PubMed

    Selen, Luc P J; Shadlen, Michael N; Wolpert, Daniel M

    2012-02-15

    Both decision making and sensorimotor control require real-time processing of noisy information streams. Historically these processes were thought to operate sequentially: cognitive processing leads to a decision, and the outcome is passed to the motor system to be converted into action. Recently, it has been suggested that the decision process may provide a continuous flow of information to the motor system, allowing it to prepare in a graded fashion for the probable outcome. Such continuous flow is supported by electrophysiology in nonhuman primates. Here we provide direct evidence for the continuous flow of an evolving decision variable to the motor system in humans. Subjects viewed a dynamic random dot display and were asked to indicate their decision about direction by moving a handle to one of two targets. We probed the state of the motor system by perturbing the arm at random times during decision formation. Reflex gains were modulated by the strength and duration of motion, reflecting the accumulated evidence in support of the evolving decision. The magnitude and variance of these gains tracked a decision variable that explained the subject's decision accuracy. The findings support a continuous process linking the evolving computations associated with decision making and sensorimotor control.

  17. Distinct developmental genetic mechanisms underlie convergently evolved tooth gain in sticklebacks

    PubMed Central

    Ellis, Nicholas A.; Glazer, Andrew M.; Donde, Nikunj N.; Cleves, Phillip A.; Agoglia, Rachel M.; Miller, Craig T.

    2015-01-01

    Teeth are a classic model system of organogenesis, as repeated and reciprocal epithelial and mesenchymal interactions pattern placode formation and outgrowth. Less is known about the developmental and genetic bases of tooth formation and replacement in polyphyodonts, which are vertebrates with continual tooth replacement. Here, we leverage natural variation in the threespine stickleback fish Gasterosteus aculeatus to investigate the genetic basis of tooth development and replacement. We find that two derived freshwater stickleback populations have both convergently evolved more ventral pharyngeal teeth through heritable genetic changes. In both populations, evolved tooth gain manifests late in development. Using pulse-chase vital dye labeling to mark newly forming teeth in adult fish, we find that both high-toothed freshwater populations have accelerated tooth replacement rates relative to low-toothed ancestral marine fish. Despite the similar evolved phenotype of more teeth and an accelerated adult replacement rate, the timing of tooth number divergence and the spatial patterns of newly formed adult teeth are different in the two populations, suggesting distinct developmental mechanisms. Using genome-wide linkage mapping in marine-freshwater F2 genetic crosses, we find that the genetic basis of evolved tooth gain in the two freshwater populations is largely distinct. Together, our results support a model whereby increased tooth number and an accelerated tooth replacement rate have evolved convergently in two independently derived freshwater stickleback populations using largely distinct developmental and genetic mechanisms. PMID:26062935

  18. Distinct developmental genetic mechanisms underlie convergently evolved tooth gain in sticklebacks.

    PubMed

    Ellis, Nicholas A; Glazer, Andrew M; Donde, Nikunj N; Cleves, Phillip A; Agoglia, Rachel M; Miller, Craig T

    2015-07-15

    Teeth are a classic model system of organogenesis, as repeated and reciprocal epithelial and mesenchymal interactions pattern placode formation and outgrowth. Less is known about the developmental and genetic bases of tooth formation and replacement in polyphyodonts, which are vertebrates with continual tooth replacement. Here, we leverage natural variation in the threespine stickleback fish Gasterosteus aculeatus to investigate the genetic basis of tooth development and replacement. We find that two derived freshwater stickleback populations have both convergently evolved more ventral pharyngeal teeth through heritable genetic changes. In both populations, evolved tooth gain manifests late in development. Using pulse-chase vital dye labeling to mark newly forming teeth in adult fish, we find that both high-toothed freshwater populations have accelerated tooth replacement rates relative to low-toothed ancestral marine fish. Despite the similar evolved phenotype of more teeth and an accelerated adult replacement rate, the timing of tooth number divergence and the spatial patterns of newly formed adult teeth are different in the two populations, suggesting distinct developmental mechanisms. Using genome-wide linkage mapping in marine-freshwater F2 genetic crosses, we find that the genetic basis of evolved tooth gain in the two freshwater populations is largely distinct. Together, our results support a model whereby increased tooth number and an accelerated tooth replacement rate have evolved convergently in two independently derived freshwater stickleback populations using largely distinct developmental and genetic mechanisms.

  19. Molecular Genetics of Sex Identification, Breed Ancestry and Polydactyly in the Norwegian Lundehund Breed.

    PubMed

    Kropatsch, Regina; Melis, Claudia; Stronen, Astrid V; Jensen, Henrik; Epplen, Joerg T

    2015-01-01

    The Norwegian Lundehund breed of dog has undergone a severe loss of genetic diversity as a result of inbreeding and epizootics of canine distemper. As a consequence, the breed is extremely homogeneous and accurate sex identification is not always possible by standard screening of X-chromosomal loci. To improve our genetic understanding of the breed we genotyped 17 individuals using a genome-wide array of 170 000 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Standard analyses based on expected homozygosity of X-chromosomal loci failed in assigning individuals to the correct sex, as determined initially by physical examination and confirmed with the Y-chromosomal marker, amelogenin. This demonstrates that identification of sex using standard SNP assays can be erroneous in highly inbred individuals.

  20. Epidemic spreading on evolving signed networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saeedian, M.; Azimi-Tafreshi, N.; Jafari, G. R.; Kertesz, J.

    2017-02-01

    Most studies of disease spreading consider the underlying social network as obtained without the contagion, though epidemic influences people's willingness to contact others: A "friendly" contact may be turned to "unfriendly" to avoid infection. We study the susceptible-infected disease-spreading model on signed networks, in which each edge is associated with a positive or negative sign representing the friendly or unfriendly relation between its end nodes. In a signed network, according to Heider's theory, edge signs evolve such that finally a state of structural balance is achieved, corresponding to no frustration in physics terms. However, the danger of infection affects the evolution of its edge signs. To describe the coupled problem of the sign evolution and disease spreading, we generalize the notion of structural balance by taking into account the state of the nodes. We introduce an energy function and carry out Monte Carlo simulations on complete networks to test the energy landscape, where we find local minima corresponding to the so-called jammed states. We study the effect of the ratio of initial friendly to unfriendly connections on the propagation of disease. The steady state can be balanced or a jammed state such that a coexistence occurs between susceptible and infected nodes in the system.

  1. The evolved function of the oedipal conflict.

    PubMed

    Josephs, Lawrence

    2010-08-01

    Freud based his oedipal theory on three clinical observations of adult romantic relationships: (1) Adults tend to split love and lust; (2) There tend to be sex differences in the ways that men and women split love and lust; (3) Adult romantic relationships are unconsciously structured by the dynamics of love triangles in which dramas of seduction and betrayal unfold. Freud believed that these aspects of adult romantic relationships were derivative expressions of a childhood oedipal conflict that has been repressed. Recent research conducted by evolutionary psychologists supports many of Freud's original observations and suggests that Freud's oedipal conflict may have evolved as a sexually selected adaptation for reproductive advantage. The evolution of bi-parental care based on sexually exclusive romantic bonds made humans vulnerable to the costs of sexual infidelity, a situation of danger that seriously threatens monogamous bonds. A childhood oedipal conflict enables humans to better adapt to this longstanding evolutionary problem by providing the child with an opportunity to develop working models of love triangles. On the one hand, the oedipal conflict facilitates monogamous resolutions by creating intense anxiety about the dangers of sexual infidelity and mate poaching. On the other hand, the oedipal conflict in humans may facilitate successful cheating and mate poaching by cultivating a talent for hiding our true sexual intentions from others and even from ourselves. The oedipal conflict in humans may be disguised by evolutionary design in order to facilitate tactical deception in adult romantic relationships.

  2. Evolving role of MRI in Crohn's disease.

    PubMed

    Yacoub, Joseph H; Obara, Piotr; Oto, Aytekin

    2013-06-01

    MR enterography is playing an evolving role in the evaluation of small bowel Crohn's disease (CD). Standard MR enterography includes a combination of rapidly acquired T2 sequence, balanced steady-state acquisition, and contrast enhanced T1-weighted gradient echo sequence. The diagnostic performance of these sequences has been shown to be comparable, and in some respects superior, to other small bowel imaging modalities. The findings of CD on MR enterography have been well described in the literature. New and emerging techniques such as diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI), dynamic contrast enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI), cinematography, and magnetization transfer, may lead to improved accuracy in characterizing the disease. These advanced techniques can provide quantitative parameters that may prove to be useful in assessing disease activity, severity, and response to treatment. In the future, MR enterography may play an increasing role in management decisions for patients with small bowel CD; however, larger studies are needed to validate these emerging MRI parameters as imaging biomarkers.

  3. Evolving application of biomimetic nanostructured hydroxyapatite

    PubMed Central

    Roveri, Norberto; Iafisco, Michele

    2010-01-01

    By mimicking Nature, we can design and synthesize inorganic smart materials that are reactive to biological tissues. These smart materials can be utilized to design innovative third-generation biomaterials, which are able to not only optimize their interaction with biological tissues and environment, but also mimic biogenic materials in their functionalities. The biomedical applications involve increasing the biomimetic levels from chemical composition, structural organization, morphology, mechanical behavior, nanostructure, and bulk and surface chemical–physical properties until the surface becomes bioreactive and stimulates cellular materials. The chemical–physical characteristics of biogenic hydroxyapatites from bone and tooth have been described, in order to point out the elective sides, which are important to reproduce the design of a new biomimetic synthetic hydroxyapatite. This review outlines the evolving applications of biomimetic synthetic calcium phosphates, details the main characteristics of bone and tooth, where the calcium phosphates are present, and discusses the chemical–physical characteristics of biomimetic calcium phosphates, methods of synthesizing them, and some of their biomedical applications. PMID:24198477

  4. Evolving Galaxies in a Hierachical Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hahn, Changhoon

    2017-01-01

    Observations of galaxies using large surveys (SDSS, COSMOS, PRIMUS, etc.) have firmly established a global view of galaxy properties out to z~1. Galaxies are broadly divided into two classes: blue, typically disk-like star forming galaxies and red, typically elliptical quiescent ones with little star formation. The star formation rates (SFR) and stellar masses of star forming galaxies form an empirical relationship referred to as the "star formation main sequence". Over cosmic time, this sequence undergoes significant decline in SFR and causes the overall cosmic star formation decline. Simultaneously, physical processes cause significant fractions of star forming galaxies to "quench" their star formation. Hierarchical structure formation and cosmological models provide precise predictions of the evolution of the underying dark matter, which serve as the foundation for these detailed trends and their evolution. Whatever trends we observe in galaxy properties can be interpreted within the narrative of the underlying dark matter and halo occupation framework. More importantly, through careful statistical treatment and precise measurements, this connection can be utilized to better constrain and understand key elements of galaxy evolution. In this spirit, for my dissertation I connect observations of evolving galaxy properties to the framework of the hierarchical Universe and use it to better understand physical processes responsible for the cessation of star formation in galaxies. For instance, through this approach, I constrain the quenching timescale of central galaxies and find that they are significantly longer than the quenching timescale of satellite galaxies.

  5. On the Discovery of Evolving Truth.

    PubMed

    Li, Yaliang; Li, Qi; Gao, Jing; Su, Lu; Zhao, Bo; Fan, Wei; Han, Jiawei

    2015-08-01

    In the era of big data, information regarding the same objects can be collected from increasingly more sources. Unfortunately, there usually exist conflicts among the information coming from different sources. To tackle this challenge, truth discovery, i.e., to integrate multi-source noisy information by estimating the reliability of each source, has emerged as a hot topic. In many real world applications, however, the information may come sequentially, and as a consequence, the truth of objects as well as the reliability of sources may be dynamically evolving. Existing truth discovery methods, unfortunately, cannot handle such scenarios. To address this problem, we investigate the temporal relations among both object truths and source reliability, and propose an incremental truth discovery framework that can dynamically update object truths and source weights upon the arrival of new data. Theoretical analysis is provided to show that the proposed method is guaranteed to converge at a fast rate. The experiments on three real world applications and a set of synthetic data demonstrate the advantages of the proposed method over state-of-the-art truth discovery methods.

  6. Speciation genetics: current status and evolving approaches

    PubMed Central

    Wolf, Jochen B. W.; Lindell, Johan; Backström, Niclas

    2010-01-01

    The view of species as entities subjected to natural selection and amenable to change put forth by Charles Darwin and Alfred Wallace laid the conceptual foundation for understanding speciation. Initially marred by a rudimental understanding of hereditary principles, evolutionists gained appreciation of the mechanistic underpinnings of speciation following the merger of Mendelian genetic principles with Darwinian evolution. Only recently have we entered an era where deciphering the molecular basis of speciation is within reach. Much focus has been devoted to the genetic basis of intrinsic postzygotic isolation in model organisms and several hybrid incompatibility genes have been successfully identified. However, concomitant with the recent technological advancements in genome analysis and a newfound interest in the role of ecology in the differentiation process, speciation genetic research is becoming increasingly open to non-model organisms. This development will expand speciation research beyond the traditional boundaries and unveil the genetic basis of speciation from manifold perspectives and at various stages of the splitting process. This review aims at providing an extensive overview of speciation genetics. Starting from key historical developments and core concepts of speciation genetics, we focus much of our attention on evolving approaches and introduce promising methodological approaches for future research venues. PMID:20439277

  7. Extreme insular dwarfism evolved in a mammoth.

    PubMed

    Herridge, Victoria L; Lister, Adrian M

    2012-08-22

    The insular dwarfism seen in Pleistocene elephants has come to epitomize the island rule; yet our understanding of this phenomenon is hampered by poor taxonomy. For Mediterranean dwarf elephants, where the most extreme cases of insular dwarfism are observed, a key systematic question remains unresolved: are all taxa phyletic dwarfs of a single mainland species Palaeoloxodon antiquus (straight-tusked elephant), or are some referable to Mammuthus (mammoths)? Ancient DNA and geochronological evidence have been used to support a Mammuthus origin for the Cretan 'Palaeoloxodon' creticus, but these studies have been shown to be flawed. On the basis of existing collections and recent field discoveries, we present new, morphological evidence for the taxonomic status of 'P'. creticus, and show that it is indeed a mammoth, most probably derived from Early Pleistocene Mammuthus meridionalis or possibly Late Pliocene Mammuthus rumanus. We also show that Mammuthus creticus is smaller than other known insular dwarf mammoths, and is similar in size to the smallest dwarf Palaeoloxodon species from Sicily and Malta, making it the smallest mammoth species known to have existed. These findings indicate that extreme insular dwarfism has evolved to a similar degree independently in two elephant lineages.

  8. Metapopulation capacity of evolving fluvial landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bertuzzo, Enrico; Rodriguez-Iturbe, Ignacio; Rinaldo, Andrea

    2015-04-01

    The form of fluvial landscapes is known to attain stationary network configurations that settle in dynamically accessible minima of total energy dissipation by landscape-forming discharges. Recent studies have highlighted the role of the dendritic structure of river networks in controlling population dynamics of the species they host and large-scale biodiversity patterns. Here, we systematically investigate the relation between energy dissipation, the physical driver for the evolution of river networks, and the ecological dynamics of their embedded biota. To that end, we use the concept of metapopulation capacity, a measure to link landscape structures with the population dynamics they host. Technically, metapopulation capacity is the leading eigenvalue λM of an appropriate "landscape" matrix subsuming whether a given species is predicted to persist in the long run. λM can conveniently be used to rank different landscapes in terms of their capacity to support viable metapopulations. We study how λM changes in response to the evolving network configurations of spanning trees. Such sequence of configurations is theoretically known to relate network selection to general landscape evolution equations through imperfect searches for dynamically accessible states frustrated by the vagaries of Nature. Results show that the process shaping the metric and the topological properties of river networks, prescribed by physical constraints, leads to a progressive increase in the corresponding metapopulation capacity and therefore on the landscape capacity to support metapopulations—with implications on biodiversity in fluvial ecosystems.

  9. Tearing Mode Stability of Evolving Toroidal Equilibria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pletzer, A.; McCune, D.; Manickam, J.; Jardin, S. C.

    2000-10-01

    There are a number of toroidal equilibrium (such as JSOLVER, ESC, EFIT, and VMEC) and transport codes (such as TRANSP, BALDUR, and TSC) in our community that utilize differing equilibrium representations. There are also many heating and current drive (LSC and TORRAY), and stability (PEST1-3, GATO, NOVA, MARS, DCON, M3D) codes that require this equilibrium information. In an effort to provide seamless compatibility between the codes that produce and need these equilibria, we have developed two Fortran 90 modules, MEQ and XPLASMA, that serve as common interfaces between these two classes of codes. XPLASMA provides a common equilibrium representation for the heating and current drive applications while MEQ provides common equilibrium and associated metric information needed by MHD stability codes. We illustrate the utility of this approach by presenting results of PEST-3 tearing stability calculations of an NSTX discharge performed on profiles provided by the TRANSP code. Using the MEQ module, the TRANSP equilibrium data are stored in a Fortran 90 derived type and passed to PEST3 as a subroutine argument. All calculations are performed on the fly, as the profiles evolve.

  10. Origins of stereoselectivity in evolved ketoreductases.

    PubMed

    Noey, Elizabeth L; Tibrewal, Nidhi; Jiménez-Osés, Gonzalo; Osuna, Sílvia; Park, Jiyong; Bond, Carly M; Cascio, Duilio; Liang, Jack; Zhang, Xiyun; Huisman, Gjalt W; Tang, Yi; Houk, Kendall N

    2015-12-22

    Mutants of Lactobacillus kefir short-chain alcohol dehydrogenase, used here as ketoreductases (KREDs), enantioselectively reduce the pharmaceutically relevant substrates 3-thiacyclopentanone and 3-oxacyclopentanone. These substrates differ by only the heteroatom (S or O) in the ring, but the KRED mutants reduce them with different enantioselectivities. Kinetic studies show that these enzymes are more efficient with 3-thiacyclopentanone than with 3-oxacyclopentanone. X-ray crystal structures of apo- and NADP(+)-bound selected mutants show that the substrate-binding loop conformational preferences are modified by these mutations. Quantum mechanical calculations and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations are used to investigate the mechanism of reduction by the enzyme. We have developed an MD-based method for studying the diastereomeric transition state complexes and rationalize different enantiomeric ratios. This method, which probes the stability of the catalytic arrangement within the theozyme, shows a correlation between the relative fractions of catalytically competent poses for the enantiomeric reductions and the experimental enantiomeric ratio. Some mutations, such as A94F and Y190F, induce conformational changes in the active site that enlarge the small binding pocket, facilitating accommodation of the larger S atom in this region and enhancing S-selectivity with 3-thiacyclopentanone. In contrast, in the E145S mutant and the final variant evolved for large-scale production of the intermediate for the antibiotic sulopenem, R-selectivity is promoted by shrinking the small binding pocket, thereby destabilizing the pro-S orientation.

  11. Origins of stereoselectivity in evolved ketoreductases

    PubMed Central

    Noey, Elizabeth L.; Tibrewal, Nidhi; Jiménez-Osés, Gonzalo; Osuna, Sílvia; Park, Jiyong; Bond, Carly M.; Cascio, Duilio; Liang, Jack; Zhang, Xiyun; Huisman, Gjalt W.; Tang, Yi; Houk, Kendall N.

    2015-01-01

    Mutants of Lactobacillus kefir short-chain alcohol dehydrogenase, used here as ketoreductases (KREDs), enantioselectively reduce the pharmaceutically relevant substrates 3-thiacyclopentanone and 3-oxacyclopentanone. These substrates differ by only the heteroatom (S or O) in the ring, but the KRED mutants reduce them with different enantioselectivities. Kinetic studies show that these enzymes are more efficient with 3-thiacyclopentanone than with 3-oxacyclopentanone. X-ray crystal structures of apo- and NADP+-bound selected mutants show that the substrate-binding loop conformational preferences are modified by these mutations. Quantum mechanical calculations and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations are used to investigate the mechanism of reduction by the enzyme. We have developed an MD-based method for studying the diastereomeric transition state complexes and rationalize different enantiomeric ratios. This method, which probes the stability of the catalytic arrangement within the theozyme, shows a correlation between the relative fractions of catalytically competent poses for the enantiomeric reductions and the experimental enantiomeric ratio. Some mutations, such as A94F and Y190F, induce conformational changes in the active site that enlarge the small binding pocket, facilitating accommodation of the larger S atom in this region and enhancing S-selectivity with 3-thiacyclopentanone. In contrast, in the E145S mutant and the final variant evolved for large-scale production of the intermediate for the antibiotic sulopenem, R-selectivity is promoted by shrinking the small binding pocket, thereby destabilizing the pro-S orientation. PMID:26644568

  12. Evolving paradigms in multifocal breast cancer.

    PubMed

    Salgado, Roberto; Aftimos, Philippe; Sotiriou, Christos; Desmedt, Christine

    2015-04-01

    The 7th edition of the TNM defines multifocal breast cancer as multiple simultaneous ipsilateral and synchronous breast cancer lesions, provided they are macroscopically distinct and measurable using current traditional pathological and clinical tools. According to the College of American Pathologists (CAP), the characterization of only the largest lesion is considered sufficient, unless the grade and/or histology are different between the lesions. Here, we review three potentially clinically relevant aspects of multifocal breast cancers: first, the importance of a different intrinsic breast cancer subtype of the various lesions; second, the emerging awareness of inter-lesion heterogeneity; and last but not least, the potential introduction of bias in clinical trials due to the unrecognized biological diversity of these cancers. Although the current strategy to assess the lesion with the largest diameter has clearly its advantages in terms of costs and feasibility, this recommendation may not be sustainable in time and might need to be adapted to be compliant with new evolving paradigms in breast cancer.

  13. Speciation genetics: current status and evolving approaches.

    PubMed

    Wolf, Jochen B W; Lindell, Johan; Backström, Niclas

    2010-06-12

    The view of species as entities subjected to natural selection and amenable to change put forth by Charles Darwin and Alfred Wallace laid the conceptual foundation for understanding speciation. Initially marred by a rudimental understanding of hereditary principles, evolutionists gained appreciation of the mechanistic underpinnings of speciation following the merger of Mendelian genetic principles with Darwinian evolution. Only recently have we entered an era where deciphering the molecular basis of speciation is within reach. Much focus has been devoted to the genetic basis of intrinsic postzygotic isolation in model organisms and several hybrid incompatibility genes have been successfully identified. However, concomitant with the recent technological advancements in genome analysis and a newfound interest in the role of ecology in the differentiation process, speciation genetic research is becoming increasingly open to non-model organisms. This development will expand speciation research beyond the traditional boundaries and unveil the genetic basis of speciation from manifold perspectives and at various stages of the splitting process. This review aims at providing an extensive overview of speciation genetics. Starting from key historical developments and core concepts of speciation genetics, we focus much of our attention on evolving approaches and introduce promising methodological approaches for future research venues.

  14. An evolving model of online bipartite networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Chu-Xu; Zhang, Zi-Ke; Liu, Chuang

    2013-12-01

    Understanding the structure and evolution of online bipartite networks is a significant task since they play a crucial role in various e-commerce services nowadays. Recently, various attempts have been tried to propose different models, resulting in either power-law or exponential degree distributions. However, many empirical results show that the user degree distribution actually follows a shifted power-law distribution, the so-called Mandelbrot’s law, which cannot be fully described by previous models. In this paper, we propose an evolving model, considering two different user behaviors: random and preferential attachment. Extensive empirical results on two real bipartite networks, Delicious and CiteULike, show that the theoretical model can well characterize the structure of real networks for both user and object degree distributions. In addition, we introduce a structural parameter p, to demonstrate that the hybrid user behavior leads to the shifted power-law degree distribution, and the region of power-law tail will increase with the increment of p. The proposed model might shed some lights in understanding the underlying laws governing the structure of real online bipartite networks.

  15. How does cognition evolve? Phylogenetic comparative psychology.

    PubMed

    MacLean, Evan L; Matthews, Luke J; Hare, Brian A; Nunn, Charles L; Anderson, Rindy C; Aureli, Filippo; Brannon, Elizabeth M; Call, Josep; Drea, Christine M; Emery, Nathan J; Haun, Daniel B M; Herrmann, Esther; Jacobs, Lucia F; Platt, Michael L; Rosati, Alexandra G; Sandel, Aaron A; Schroepfer, Kara K; Seed, Amanda M; Tan, Jingzhi; van Schaik, Carel P; Wobber, Victoria

    2012-03-01

    Now more than ever animal studies have the potential to test hypotheses regarding how cognition evolves. Comparative psychologists have developed new techniques to probe the cognitive mechanisms underlying animal behavior, and they have become increasingly skillful at adapting methodologies to test multiple species. Meanwhile, evolutionary biologists have generated quantitative approaches to investigate the phylogenetic distribution and function of phenotypic traits, including cognition. In particular, phylogenetic methods can quantitatively (1) test whether specific cognitive abilities are correlated with life history (e.g., lifespan), morphology (e.g., brain size), or socio-ecological variables (e.g., social system), (2) measure how strongly phylogenetic relatedness predicts the distribution of cognitive skills across species, and (3) estimate the ancestral state of a given cognitive trait using measures of cognitive performance from extant species. Phylogenetic methods can also be used to guide the selection of species comparisons that offer the strongest tests of a priori predictions of cognitive evolutionary hypotheses (i.e., phylogenetic targeting). Here, we explain how an integration of comparative psychology and evolutionary biology will answer a host of questions regarding the phylogenetic distribution and history of cognitive traits, as well as the evolutionary processes that drove their evolution.

  16. Fast evolving pair-instability supernovae

    DOE PAGES

    Kozyreva, Alexandra; Gilmer, Matthew; Hirschi, Raphael; ...

    2016-10-06

    With an increasing number of superluminous supernovae (SLSNe) discovered the ques- tion of their origin remains open and causes heated debates in the supernova commu- nity. Currently, there are three proposed mechanisms for SLSNe: (1) pair-instability supernovae (PISN), (2) magnetar-driven supernovae, and (3) models in which the su- pernova ejecta interacts with a circumstellar material ejected before the explosion. Based on current observations of SLSNe, the PISN origin has been disfavoured for a number of reasons. Many PISN models provide overly broad light curves and too reddened spectra, because of massive ejecta and a high amount of nickel. In themore » cur- rent study we re-examine PISN properties using progenitor models computed with the GENEC code. We calculate supernova explosions with FLASH and light curve evolu- tion with the radiation hydrodynamics code STELLA. We find that high-mass models (200 M⊙ and 250 M⊙) at relatively high metallicity (Z=0.001) do not retain hydro- gen in the outer layers and produce relatively fast evolving PISNe Type I and might be suitable to explain some SLSNe. We also investigate uncertainties in light curve modelling due to codes, opacities, the nickel-bubble effect and progenitor structure and composition.« less

  17. Fast evolving pair-instability supernovae

    SciTech Connect

    Kozyreva, Alexandra; Gilmer, Matthew; Hirschi, Raphael; Frohlich, Carla; Blinnikov, Sergey; Wollaeger, Ryan Thomas; Noebauer, Ulrich M.; van Rossum, Daniel R.; Heger, Alexander; Even, Wesley Paul; Waldman, Roni; Tolstov, Alexey; Chatzopoulos, Emmanouil; Sorokina, Elena

    2016-10-06

    With an increasing number of superluminous supernovae (SLSNe) discovered the ques- tion of their origin remains open and causes heated debates in the supernova commu- nity. Currently, there are three proposed mechanisms for SLSNe: (1) pair-instability supernovae (PISN), (2) magnetar-driven supernovae, and (3) models in which the su- pernova ejecta interacts with a circumstellar material ejected before the explosion. Based on current observations of SLSNe, the PISN origin has been disfavoured for a number of reasons. Many PISN models provide overly broad light curves and too reddened spectra, because of massive ejecta and a high amount of nickel. In the cur- rent study we re-examine PISN properties using progenitor models computed with the GENEC code. We calculate supernova explosions with FLASH and light curve evolu- tion with the radiation hydrodynamics code STELLA. We find that high-mass models (200 M⊙ and 250 M⊙) at relatively high metallicity (Z=0.001) do not retain hydro- gen in the outer layers and produce relatively fast evolving PISNe Type I and might be suitable to explain some SLSNe. We also investigate uncertainties in light curve modelling due to codes, opacities, the nickel-bubble effect and progenitor structure and composition.

  18. On the Discovery of Evolving Truth

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yaliang; Li, Qi; Gao, Jing; Su, Lu; Zhao, Bo; Fan, Wei; Han, Jiawei

    2015-01-01

    In the era of big data, information regarding the same objects can be collected from increasingly more sources. Unfortunately, there usually exist conflicts among the information coming from different sources. To tackle this challenge, truth discovery, i.e., to integrate multi-source noisy information by estimating the reliability of each source, has emerged as a hot topic. In many real world applications, however, the information may come sequentially, and as a consequence, the truth of objects as well as the reliability of sources may be dynamically evolving. Existing truth discovery methods, unfortunately, cannot handle such scenarios. To address this problem, we investigate the temporal relations among both object truths and source reliability, and propose an incremental truth discovery framework that can dynamically update object truths and source weights upon the arrival of new data. Theoretical analysis is provided to show that the proposed method is guaranteed to converge at a fast rate. The experiments on three real world applications and a set of synthetic data demonstrate the advantages of the proposed method over state-of-the-art truth discovery methods. PMID:26705502

  19. Extreme insular dwarfism evolved in a mammoth

    PubMed Central

    Herridge, Victoria L.; Lister, Adrian M.

    2012-01-01

    The insular dwarfism seen in Pleistocene elephants has come to epitomize the island rule; yet our understanding of this phenomenon is hampered by poor taxonomy. For Mediterranean dwarf elephants, where the most extreme cases of insular dwarfism are observed, a key systematic question remains unresolved: are all taxa phyletic dwarfs of a single mainland species Palaeoloxodon antiquus (straight-tusked elephant), or are some referable to Mammuthus (mammoths)? Ancient DNA and geochronological evidence have been used to support a Mammuthus origin for the Cretan ‘Palaeoloxodon’ creticus, but these studies have been shown to be flawed. On the basis of existing collections and recent field discoveries, we present new, morphological evidence for the taxonomic status of ‘P’. creticus, and show that it is indeed a mammoth, most probably derived from Early Pleistocene Mammuthus meridionalis or possibly Late Pliocene Mammuthus rumanus. We also show that Mammuthus creticus is smaller than other known insular dwarf mammoths, and is similar in size to the smallest dwarf Palaeoloxodon species from Sicily and Malta, making it the smallest mammoth species known to have existed. These findings indicate that extreme insular dwarfism has evolved to a similar degree independently in two elephant lineages. PMID:22572206

  20. Evolving the ingredients for reciprocity and spite

    PubMed Central

    Hauser, Marc; McAuliffe, Katherine; Blake, Peter R.

    2009-01-01

    Darwin never provided a satisfactory account of altruism, but posed the problem beautifully in light of the logic of natural selection. Hamilton and Williams delivered the necessary satisfaction by appealing to kinship, and Trivers showed that kinship was not necessary as long as the originally altruistic act was conditionally reciprocated. From the late 1970s to the present, the kinship theories in particular have been supported by considerable empirical data and elaborated to explore a number of other social interactions such as cooperation, selfishness and punishment, giving us what is now a rich description of the nature of social relationships among organisms. There are, however, two forms of theoretically possible social interactions—reciprocity and spite—that appear absent or nearly so in non-human vertebrates, despite considerable research efforts on a wide diversity of species. We suggest that the rather weak comparative evidence for these interactions is predicted once we consider the requisite socioecological pressures and psychological mechanisms. That is, a consideration of ultimate demands and proximate prerequisites leads to the prediction that reciprocity and spite should be rare in non-human animals, and common in humans. In particular, reciprocity and spite evolved in humans because of adaptive demands on cooperation among unrelated individuals living in large groups, and the integrative capacities of inequity detection, future-oriented decision-making and inhibitory control. PMID:19805432

  1. Evolving dynamic web pages using web mining

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menon, Kartik; Dagli, Cihan H.

    2003-08-01

    The heterogeneity and the lack of structure that permeates much of the ever expanding information sources on the WWW makes it difficult for the user to properly and efficiently access different web pages. Different users have different needs from the same web page. It is necessary to train the system to understand the needs and demands of the users. In other words there is a need for efficient and proper web mining. In this paper issues and possible ways of training the system and providing high level of organization for semi structured data available on the web is discussed. Web pages can be evolved based on history of query searches, browsing, links traversed and observation of the user behavior like book marking and time spent on viewing. Fuzzy clustering techniques help in grouping natural users and groups, neural networks, association rules and web traversals patterns help in efficient sequential anaysis based on previous searches and queries by the user. In this paper we analyze web server logs using above mentioned techniques to know more about user interactions. Analyzing these web server logs help to closely understand the user behavior and his/her web access pattern.

  2. Generative Representations for Evolving Families of Designs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hornby, Gregory S.

    2003-01-01

    Since typical evolutionary design systems encode only a single artifact with each individual, each time the objective changes a new set of individuals must be evolved. When this objective varies in a way that can be parameterized, a more general method is to use a representation in which a single individual encodes an entire class of artifacts. In addition to saving time by preventing the need for multiple evolutionary runs, the evolution of parameter-controlled designs can create families of artifacts with the same style and a reuse of parts between members of the family. In this paper an evolutionary design system is described which uses a generative representation to encode families of designs. Because a generative representation is an algorithmic encoding of a design, its input parameters are a way to control aspects of the design it generates. By evaluating individuals multiple times with different input parameters the evolutionary design system creates individuals in which the input parameter controls specific aspects of a design. This system is demonstrated on two design substrates: neural-networks which solve the 3/5/7-parity problem and three-dimensional tables of varying heights.

  3. Lower mass limit of an evolving interstellar cloud and chemistry in an evolving oscillatory cloud

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tarafdar, S. P.

    1986-01-01

    Simultaneous solution of the equation of motion, equation of state and energy equation including heating and cooling processes for interstellar medium gives for a collapsing cloud a lower mass limit which is significantly smaller than the Jeans mass for the same initial density. The clouds with higher mass than this limiting mass collapse whereas clouds with smaller than critical mass pass through a maximum central density giving apparently similar clouds (i.e., same Av, size and central density) at two different phases of its evolution (i.e., with different life time). Preliminary results of chemistry in such an evolving oscillatory cloud show significant difference in abundances of some of the molecules in two physically similar clouds with different life times. The problems of depletion and short life time of evolving clouds appear to be less severe in such an oscillatory cloud.

  4. The breeding biology of Red-Whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus) in Xishuangbanna, southwest China

    PubMed Central

    LI, Huan; ZHANG, Ming-Xia; YANG, Xiao-Jun; CUI, Liang-Wei; QUAN, Rui-Chang

    2015-01-01

    To fill the gap in breeding biology information about the Red-Whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus), in 2013, we studied the breeding biology of this species in Xishuangbanna, southwest China. The breeding began from February and continued until early August. The breeding strategy of P. jocosus was more flexible and their nests were only built in cultivated landscapes, whereas, no nest building in native tropical rain forest was found. Small open cup nests were built on 50 different plant species, and at heights ranging from 2.1±0.6 m above the ground (n=102). The mean clutch size was 2.53±0.51 eggs (n=40) and the mean egg mass was 2.81±0.25 g (n=60). The average incubation period was 11.1±0.5 days (n=14), and the average nestling period was 11.0±0.8 days (n=31). The overall nest success was 34.22%.The hatching and fledging showed either asynchrony or synchrony. Invertebrate food decreased with nestling age, whereas, plant food increased with nestling age. Moreover, distinct parental roles of the parents in nestling period were found. Compared with other passerine species, P. jocosus spent less time in incubating (58%). The clutch size, incubation and nestling period of the P. jocosus in southwest China were different from those of the P. jocosus in India. PMID:26228474

  5. Tropical winter habitat limits reproductive success on the temperate breeding grounds in a migratory bird.

    PubMed Central

    Norris, D. Ryan; Marra, Peter P.; Kyser, T. Kurt; Sherry, Thomas W.; Ratcliffe, Laurene M.

    2004-01-01

    Identifying the factors that control population dynamics in migratory animals has been constrained by our inability to track individuals throughout the annual cycle. Using stable carbon isotopes, we show that the reproductive success of a long-distance migratory bird is influenced by the quality of habitat located thousands of kilometres away on tropical wintering grounds. For male American redstarts (Setophaga ruticilla), winter habitat quality influenced arrival date on the breeding grounds, which in turn affected key variables associated with reproduction, including the number of young fledged. Based on a winter-habitat model, females occupying high-quality winter habitat were predicted to produce more than two additional young and to fledge offspring up to a month earlier compared with females wintering in poor-quality habitat. Differences of this magnitude are highly important considering redstarts are single brooded, lay clutches of only three to five eggs and spend only two-and-a-half months on the breeding grounds. Results from this study indicate the importance of understanding how periods of the annual cycle interact for migratory animals. Continued loss of tropical wintering habitat could have negative effects on migratory populations in the following breeding season, minimizing density-dependent effects on the breeding grounds and leading to further population declines. If conservation efforts are to be successful, strategies must incorporate measures to protect all the habitats used during the entire annual cycle of migratory animals. PMID:15002772

  6. The breeding biology of Red-Whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus) in Xishuangbanna, southwest China.

    PubMed

    Li, Huan; Zhang, Ming-Xia; Yang, Xiao-Jun; Cui, Liang-Wei; Quan, Rui-Chang

    2015-07-18

    To fill the gap in breeding biology information about the Red-Whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus), in 2013, we studied the breeding biology of this species in Xishuangbanna, southwest China. The breeding began from February and continued until early August. The breeding strategy of P. jocosus was more flexible and their nests were only built in cultivated landscapes, whereas, no nest building in native tropical rain forest was found. Small open cup nests were built on 50 different plant species, and at heights ranging from 2.1±0.6 m above the ground (n=102). The mean clutch size was 2.53±0.51 eggs (n=40) and the mean egg mass was 2.81±0.25 g (n=60). The average incubation period was 11.1±0.5 days (n=14), and the average nestling period was 11.0±0.8 days (n=31). The overall nest success was 34.22%.The hatching and fledging showed either asynchrony or synchrony. Invertebrate food decreased with nestling age, whereas, plant food increased with nestling age. Moreover, distinct parental roles of the parents in nestling period were found. Compared with other passerine species, P. jocosus spent less time in incubating (58%). The clutch size, incubation and nestling period of the P. jocosus in southwest China were different from those of the P. jocosus in India.

  7. Clark's Nutcracker Breeding Season Space Use and Foraging Behavior.

    PubMed

    Schaming, Taza D

    2016-01-01

    Considering the entire life history of a species is fundamental to developing effective conservation strategies. Decreasing populations of five-needle white pines may be leading to the decline of Clark's nutcrackers (Nucifraga columbiana). These birds are important seed dispersers for at least ten conifer species in the western U.S., including whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis), an obligate mutualist of Clark's nutcrackers. For effective conservation of both Clark's nutcrackers and whitebark pine, it is essential to ensure stability of Clark's nutcracker populations. My objectives were to examine Clark's nutcracker breeding season home range size, territoriality, habitat selection, and foraging behavior in the southern Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, a region where whitebark pine is declining. I radio-tracked Clark's nutcrackers in 2011, a population-wide nonbreeding year following a low whitebark pine cone crop, and 2012, a breeding year following a high cone crop. Results suggest Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) communities are important habitat for Clark's nutcrackers because they selected it for home ranges. In contrast, they did not select whitebark pine habitat. However, Clark's nutcrackers did adjust their use of whitebark pine habitat between years, suggesting that, in some springs, whitebark pine habitat may be used more than previously expected. Newly extracted Douglas-fir seeds were an important food source both years. On the other hand, cached seeds made up a relatively lower proportion of the diet in 2011, suggesting cached seeds are not a reliable spring food source. Land managers focus on restoring whitebark pine habitat with the assumption that Clark's nutcrackers will be available to continue seed dispersal. In the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, Clark's nutcracker populations may be more likely to be retained year-round when whitebark pine restoration efforts are located adjacent to Douglas-fir habitat. By extrapolation, whitebark pine restoration

  8. Use of microsatellite markers to assign goats to their breeds.

    PubMed

    Aljumaah, R S; Alobre, M M; Al-Atiyat, R M

    2015-08-07

    We investigated the potential of 17 microsatellite markers for assigning Saudi goat individuals to their breeds. Three local breeds, Bishi, Jabali, and Tohami were genotyped using these markers, and Somali goats were used as a reference breed. The majority of alleles were shared between the breeds, except for some that were specific to each breed. The Garza-Williamson index was lowest in the Bishi breed, indicating that a recent bottleneck event occurred. The overall results assigned the goat individuals (based on their genotypes) to the same breeds from which they were sampled, except in a few cases. The individuals' genotypes were sufficient to provide a clear distinction between the Somali goat breed and the others. In three factorial dimensions, the results of a correspondence analysis indicated that the total variation for the first and second factors was 48.85 and 31.43%, respectively. Consequently, Jabali, Bishi, and Tohami goats were in separate groups. The Jabali goat was closely related to the Bishi goat. Somali goats were distinguished from each other and from individuals of the other three goat breeds. The markers were successful in assigning individual goats to their breeds, based on the likelihood of a given individual's genotype.

  9. Admixture and local breed marginalization threaten Algerian sheep diversity.

    PubMed

    Gaouar, Samir Bachir Souheil; Da Silva, Anne; Ciani, Elena; Kdidi, Samia; Aouissat, Miloud; Dhimi, Laziz; Lafri, Mohamed; Maftah, Abderrahman; Mehtar, Nadhira

    2015-01-01

    Due to its geo-climatic conditions, Algeria represents a biodiversity hotspot, with sheep breeds well adapted to a patchwork of extremely heterogeneous harsh habitats. The importance of this peculiar genetic reservoir increases as climate change drives the demand for new adaptations. However, the expansion of a single breed (Ouled-Djellal) which occurred in the last decades has generated a critical situation for the other breeds; some of them are being subjected to uncontrolled cross-breeding with the favored breed and/or to marginalization (effective size contraction). This study investigated genetic diversity within and among six of the nine Algerian breeds, by use of 30 microsatellite markers. Our results showed that, in spite of the census contraction experienced by most of the considered breeds, genetic diversity is still substantial (average gene diversity ranging 0.68 to 0.76) and inbreeding was not identified as a problem. However, two breeds (Rembi and Taâdmit) appeared to have lost most of their genetic originality because of intensive cross-breeding with Ouled-Djellal. Based on the above evidence, we suggest Hamra, Sidaoun, and D'man as breeds deserving the highest priority for conservation in Algeria.

  10. Admixture and Local Breed Marginalization Threaten Algerian Sheep Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Ciani, Elena; Kdidi, Samia; Aouissat, Miloud; Dhimi, Laziz; Lafri, Mohamed; Maftah, Abderrahman; Mehtar, Nadhira

    2015-01-01

    Due to its geo-climatic conditions, Algeria represents a biodiversity hotspot, with sheep breeds well adapted to a patchwork of extremely heterogeneous harsh habitats. The importance of this peculiar genetic reservoir increases as climate change drives the demand for new adaptations. However, the expansion of a single breed (Ouled-Djellal) which occurred in the last decades has generated a critical situation for the other breeds; some of them are being subjected to uncontrolled cross-breeding with the favored breed and/or to marginalization (effective size contraction). This study investigated genetic diversity within and among six of the nine Algerian breeds, by use of 30 microsatellite markers. Our results showed that, in spite of the census contraction experienced by most of the considered breeds, genetic diversity is still substantial (average gene diversity ranging 0.68 to 0.76) and inbreeding was not identified as a problem. However, two breeds (Rembi and Taâdmit) appeared to have lost most of their genetic originality because of intensive cross-breeding with Ouled-Djellal. Based on the above evidence, we suggest Hamra, Sidaoun, and D’man as breeds deserving the highest priority for conservation in Algeria. PMID:25875832

  11. Lifelong learning: Established concepts and evolving values

    PubMed Central

    Talati, Jamsheer Jehangir

    2014-01-01

    Objective To summarise the concepts critical for understanding the content and value of lifelong learning (LL). Methods Ideas generated by personal experience were combined with those of philosophers, social scientists, educational institutions, governments and UNESCO, to facilitate an understanding of the importance of the basic concepts of LL. Results Autopoietic, continuous, self-determined, informal, vicarious, biographical, lifelong reflexive learning, from and for society, when supported by self-chosen formal courses, can build capacities and portable skills that allow useful responses to challenges and society’s new structures of governance. The need for LL is driven by challenges. LL flows continuously in pursuit of one agenda, which could either be citizenship, as is conventional, or as this article proposes, health. LL cannot be wholly centred on vocation. Continuous medical education and continuous professional development, important in their own right, cannot supply all that is needed. LL aids society with its learning, and it requires an awareness of the environment and structures of society. It is heavily vicarious, draws on formal learning and relies for effectiveness on reflection, self-assessment and personal shaping of views of the world from different perspectives. Conclusion Health is critical to rational thought and peace, and determines society’s capacity to govern itself, and improve its health. LL should be reshaped to focus on health not citizenship. Therefore, embedding learning in society and environment is critical. Each urologist must develop an understanding of the numerous concepts in LL, of which ‘biographicisation’ is the seed that will promote innovative strategies. PMID:26019932

  12. BUBBLE DYNAMICS AT GAS-EVOLVING ELECTRODES

    SciTech Connect

    Sides, Paul J.

    1980-12-01

    Nucleation of bubbles, their growth by diffusion of dissolved gas to the bubble surface and by coalescence, and their detachment from the electrode are all very fast phenomena; furthermore, electrolytically generated bubbles range in size from ten to a few hundred microns; therefore, magnification and high speed cinematography are required to observe bubbles and the phenomena of their growth on the electrode surface. Viewing the action from the front side (the surface on which the bubbles form) is complicated because the most important events occur close to the surface and are obscured by other bubbles passing between the camera and the electrode; therefore, oxygen was evolved on a transparent tin oxide "window" electrode and the events were viewed from the backside. The movies showed that coalescence of bubbles is very important for determining the size of bubbles and in the chain of transport processes; growth by diffusion and by coalescence proceeds in series and parallel; coalescing bubbles cause significant fluid motion close to the electrode; bubbles can leave and reattach; and bubbles evolve in a cycle of growth by diffusion and different modes of coalescence. An analytical solution for the primary potential and current distribution around a spherical bubble in contact with a plane electrode is presented. Zero at the contact point, the current density reaches only one percent of its undisturbed value at 30 percent of the radius from that point and goes through a shallow maximum two radii away. The solution obtained for spherical bubbles is shown to apply for the small bubbles of electrolytic processes. The incremental resistance in ohms caused by sparse arrays of bubbles is given by {Delta}R = 1.352 af/kS where f is the void fraction of gas in the bubble layer, a is the bubble layer thickness, k is the conductivity of gas free electrolyte, and S is the electrode area. A densely populated gas bubble layer on an electrode was modeled as a hexagonal array of

  13. Evolving Recommendations on Prostate Cancer Screening.

    PubMed

    Brawley, Otis W; Thompson, Ian M; Grönberg, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    Results of a number of studies demonstrate that the serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) in and of itself is an inadequate screening test. Today, one of the most pressing questions in prostate cancer medicine is how can screening be honed to identify those who have life-threatening disease and need aggressive treatment. A number of efforts are underway. One such effort is the assessment of men in the landmark Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial that has led to a prostate cancer risk calculator (PCPTRC), which is available online. PCPTRC version 2.0 predicts the probability of the diagnosis of no cancer, low-grade cancer, or high-grade cancer when variables such as PSA, age, race, family history, and physical findings are input. Modern biomarker development promises to provide tests with fewer false positives and improved ability to find high-grade cancers. Stockholm III (STHLM3) is a prospective, population-based, paired, screen-positive, prostate cancer diagnostic study assessing a combination of plasma protein biomarkers along with age, family history, previous biopsy, and prostate examination for prediction of prostate cancer. Multiparametric MRI incorporates anatomic and functional imaging to better characterize and predict future behavior of tumors within the prostate. After diagnosis of cancer, several genomic tests promise to better distinguish the cancers that need treatment versus those that need observation. Although the new technologies are promising, there is an urgent need for evaluation of these new tests in high-quality, large population-based studies. Until these technologies are proven, most professional organizations have evolved to a recommendation of informed or shared decision making in which there is a discussion between the doctor and patient.

  14. Emergent spacetime in stochastically evolving dimensions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Afshordi, Niayesh; Stojkovic, Dejan

    2014-12-01

    Changing the dimensionality of the space-time at the smallest and largest distances has manifold theoretical advantages. If the space is lower dimensional in the high energy regime, then there are no ultraviolet divergencies in field theories, it is possible to quantize gravity, and the theory of matter plus gravity is free of divergencies or renormalizable. If the space is higher dimensional at cosmological scales, then some cosmological problems (including the cosmological constant problem) can be attacked from a completely new perspective. In this paper, we construct an explicit model of "evolving dimensions" in which the dimensions open up as the temperature of the universe drops. We adopt the string theory framework in which the dimensions are fields that live on the string worldsheet, and add temperature dependent mass terms for them. At the Big Bang, all the dimensions are very heavy and are not excited. As the universe cools down, dimensions open up one by one. Thus, the dimensionality of the space we live in depends on the energy or temperature that we are probing. In particular, we provide a kinematic Brandenberger-Vafa argument for how a discrete causal set, and eventually a continuum (3 + 1)-dim spacetime along with Einstein gravity emerges in the Infrared from the worldsheet action. The (3 + 1)-dim Planck mass and the string scale become directly related, without any compactification. Amongst other predictions, we argue that LHC might be blind to new physics even if it comes at the TeV scale. In contrast, cosmic ray experiments, especially those that can register the very beginning of the shower, and collisions with high multiplicity and density of particles, might be sensitive to the dimensional cross-over.

  15. Evolvable Cryogenics (ECRYO) Pressure Transducer Calibration Test

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Diaz, Carlos E., Jr.

    2015-01-01

    This paper provides a summary of the findings of recent activities conducted by Marshall Space Flight Center's (MSFC) In-Space Propulsion Branch and MSFC's Metrology and Calibration Lab to assess the performance of current "state of the art" pressure transducers for use in long duration storage and transfer of cryogenic propellants. A brief historical narrative in this paper describes the Evolvable Cryogenics program and the relevance of these activities to the program. This paper also provides a review of three separate test activities performed throughout this effort, including: (1) the calibration of several pressure transducer designs in a liquid nitrogen cryogenic environmental chamber, (2) the calibration of a pressure transducer in a liquid helium Dewar, and (3) the calibration of several pressure transducers at temperatures ranging from 20 to 70 degrees Kelvin (K) using a "cryostat" environmental chamber. These three separate test activities allowed for study of the sensors along a temperature range from 4 to 300 K. The combined data shows that both the slope and intercept of the sensor's calibration curve vary as a function of temperature. This homogeneous function is contrary to the linearly decreasing relationship assumed at the start of this investigation. Consequently, the data demonstrates the need for lookup tables to change the slope and intercept used by any data acquisition system. This ultimately would allow for more accurate pressure measurements at the desired temperature range. This paper concludes with a review of a request for information (RFI) survey conducted amongst different suppliers to determine the availability of current "state of the art" flight-qualified pressure transducers. The survey identifies requirements that are most difficult for the suppliers to meet, most notably the capability to validate the sensor's performance at temperatures below 70 K.

  16. Evolutionary genomics of fast evolving tunicates.

    PubMed

    Berná, Luisa; Alvarez-Valin, Fernando

    2014-07-08

    Tunicates have been extensively studied because of their crucial phylogenetic location (the closest living relatives of vertebrates) and particular developmental plan. Recent genome efforts have disclosed that tunicates are also remarkable in their genome organization and molecular evolutionary patterns. Here, we review these latter aspects, comparing the similarities and specificities of two model species of the group: Oikopleura dioica and Ciona intestinalis. These species exhibit great genome plasticity and Oikopleura in particular has undergone a process of extreme genome reduction and compaction that can be explained in part by gene loss, but is mostly due to other mechanisms such as shortening of intergenic distances and introns, and scarcity of mobile elements. In Ciona, genome reorganization was less severe being more similar to the other chordates in several aspects. Rates and patterns of molecular evolution are also peculiar in tunicates, being Ciona about 50% faster than vertebrates and Oikopleura three times faster. In fact, the latter species is considered as the fastest evolving metazoan recorded so far. Two processes of increase in evolutionary rates have taken place in tunicates. One of them is more extreme, and basically restricted to genes encoding regulatory proteins (transcription regulators, chromatin remodeling proteins, and metabolic regulators), and the other one is less pronounced but affects the whole genome. Very likely adaptive evolution has played a very significant role in the first, whereas the functional and/or evolutionary causes of the second are less clear and the evidence is not conclusive. The evidences supporting the incidence of increased mutation and less efficient negative selection are presented and discussed.

  17. Evolutionary Genomics of Fast Evolving Tunicates

    PubMed Central

    Berná, Luisa; Alvarez-Valin, Fernando

    2014-01-01

    Tunicates have been extensively studied because of their crucial phylogenetic location (the closest living relatives of vertebrates) and particular developmental plan. Recent genome efforts have disclosed that tunicates are also remarkable in their genome organization and molecular evolutionary patterns. Here, we review these latter aspects, comparing the similarities and specificities of two model species of the group: Oikopleura dioica and Ciona intestinalis. These species exhibit great genome plasticity and Oikopleura in particular has undergone a process of extreme genome reduction and compaction that can be explained in part by gene loss, but is mostly due to other mechanisms such as shortening of intergenic distances and introns, and scarcity of mobile elements. In Ciona, genome reorganization was less severe being more similar to the other chordates in several aspects. Rates and patterns of molecular evolution are also peculiar in tunicates, being Ciona about 50% faster than vertebrates and Oikopleura three times faster. In fact, the latter species is considered as the fastest evolving metazoan recorded so far. Two processes of increase in evolutionary rates have taken place in tunicates. One of them is more extreme, and basically restricted to genes encoding regulatory proteins (transcription regulators, chromatin remodeling proteins, and metabolic regulators), and the other one is less pronounced but affects the whole genome. Very likely adaptive evolution has played a very significant role in the first, whereas the functional and/or evolutionary causes of the second are less clear and the evidence is not conclusive. The evidences supporting the incidence of increased mutation and less efficient negative selection are presented and discussed. PMID:25008364

  18. Genome Mapping and Molecular Breeding of Tomato

    PubMed Central

    Foolad, Majid R.

    2007-01-01

    The cultivated tomato, Lycopersicon esculentum, is the second most consumed vegetable worldwide and a well-studied crop species in terms of genetics, genomics, and breeding. It is one of the earliest crop plants for which a genetic linkage map was constructed, and currently there are several molecular maps based on crosses between the cultivated and various wild species of tomato. The high-density molecular map, developed based on an L. esculentum × L. pennellii cross, includes more than 2200 markers with an average marker distance of less than 1 cM and an average of 750 kbp per cM. Different types of molecular markers such as RFLPs, AFLPs, SSRs, CAPS, RGAs, ESTs, and COSs have been developed and mapped onto the 12 tomato chromosomes. Markers have been used extensively for identification and mapping of genes and QTLs for many biologically and agriculturally important traits and occasionally for germplasm screening, fingerprinting, and marker-assisted breeding. The utility of MAS in tomato breeding has been restricted largely due to limited marker polymorphism within the cultivated species and economical reasons. Also, when used, MAS has been employed mainly for improving simply-inherited traits and not much for improving complex traits. The latter has been due to unavailability of reliable PCR-based markers and problems with linkage drag. Efforts are being made to develop high-throughput markers with greater resolution, including SNPs. The expanding tomato EST database, which currently includes ∼214 000 sequences, the new microarray DNA chips, and the ongoing sequencing project are expected to aid development of more practical markers. Several BAC libraries have been developed that facilitate map-based cloning of genes and QTLs. Sequencing of the euchromatic portions of the tomato genome is paving the way for comparative and functional analysis of important genes and QTLs. PMID:18364989

  19. Management and breeding of Aotus trivirgatus.

    PubMed

    Elliott, M W; Sehgal, P K; Chalifoux, L V

    1976-12-01

    Attempts to establish successful breeding colonies of Aotus trivirgatus at this and other laboratories have largely been unsuccessful, resulting in only occasional pregnancies and a rare live birth. After the recognition of seven different karyotypes of owl monkeys, animals were paired on this basis and resulted in a marked increase in conceptions. From 1971 to 1975 only 10 pregnancies occurred but during 1975, there were 19 pregnancies. In addition to proper karyotyping, a period of acclimation and conditioning was required. Mean body measurements and weights of infants were established.

  20. Local breeds, livelihoods and livestock keepers' rights in South Asia.

    PubMed

    Köhler-Rollefson, Ilse; Rathore, H S; Mathias, E

    2009-10-01

    In South Asia, and throughout the developing world, the predominant official approach to livestock development has been improvement of production by means of upgrading local breeds via cross-breeding with exotic animals. This strategy has led to the replacement and dilution of locally adapted breeds with non-native ones. This has resulted in an alarming loss that has been estimated by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations to amount to one breed every two weeks. Based on selected case studies this paper argues that development strategies using locally adapted breeds and species are much more likely to benefit livestock keepers whilst also maintaining domestic animal diversity and bearing a smaller ecological footprint. It also analyses the rationale for "Livestock Keepers' Rights", a principle that grew out of the struggle of traditional livestock keepers to retain control over their production resources, such as grazing areas and breeding stock, in the face of unfavourable policy environments.

  1. [Molecular genetic diversity of Fujian domestic duck breeds].

    PubMed

    Li, Hui-fang; Li, Bi-chun; Ma, Yue-hui; Tang, Qing-ping; Chen, Kuan-wei; Tu, Yun-jie

    2007-02-01

    By using 28 micro-satellite markers with better polymorphism, this paper studied the genetic diversity of four Fujian provincial domestic duck breeds Jinding, Putian black, Liancheng white, and Shanma. According to the alleles frequencies, the polymorphic information content, average heterozygosity, anaqular genetic distance (DA) and Nei' s standard genetic distance (DS) for each breed were calculated. Based on DA and DS, four dendrograms were obtained by neighbor-joining (NJ) and UPGMA methods. The results showed that the average heterozygosity of the four duck breeds was 0. 5353, indicating that the protection of the genetic diversity of these breeds should be strengthened. The orders of the two types of genetic distances among the breeds were accordant, and the dendrograms were the same, reflecting that much more micro-satellite loci should be adopted to obtain more universal conclusions when the genetic diversity was analyzed. The phylogenetic relationships among the four duck breeds were in accordance with their economic types and ecological localities.

  2. The role of the physician-scientist in our evolving society.

    PubMed

    Rosen, Michael R

    2011-10-01

    The physician-scientist represents the medical-scientific version of the "triple threat" athlete. Yet, in medicine as in sports, specialization and business are ever more in the forefront. As the field of medicine evolves, it is likely that the role of the physician, the scientist, and the physician-scientist will continue to change. Whether this is for the good or bad will only be known in hindsight.

  3. Reproductive characteristics of stallions during the breeding and non-breeding season in a tropical region.

    PubMed

    Leme, Denise Pereira; Papa, Frederico Ozanam; Roser, Janet F

    2012-10-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate reproductive characteristics of stallions at a tropical zone in the breeding and non-breeding seasons. The following parameters were assessed: testicular volume; semen quality; and serum concentrations of LH, FSH, and testosterone; in addition to the percentages of germ cells and proportions of germ cells/Sertoli cells by testicular cytology in stallions. Semen was collected from eight adult stallions twice a week during a 12-week period in both seasons (6 weeks before and 6 weeks after the summer and winter solstices). Jugular blood samples were collected periodically for hormone analysis by radioimmunoassay during the same periods. Testicular measures and cytological samples were taken at the end of each period. Mean concentration of testosterone was significantly higher (P = 0.04) during the breeding season and the proportion of Sertoli cells/100 germ cells in cytological smears was significantly lower during the breeding season (P = 0.0001). Effects of season were not significant either for testicular volume or for any semen parameter (P > 0.05). Seasonal changes in the mean concentrations of LH and FSH were not observed (P > 0.05). There were also no significant differences in the mean percentages of germ cell types between both seasons (P > 0.05). Lack of seasonal differences in the testicular volume and semen parameters of tropical stallions are probably due to the small variation in duration of natural light between the observed periods, slightly under 3 h.

  4. The biotron breeding system: a rapid and reliable procedure for genetic studies and breeding in rice.

    PubMed

    Ohnishi, Takayuki; Yoshino, Mihoko; Yamakawa, Hiromoto; Kinoshita, Tetsu

    2011-07-01

    Oryza sativa is widely used as a model organism for many aspects of research in monocots and cereals. However, it has certain disadvantages as a model species compared with Arabidopsis thaliana, the eudicot species most widely used in plant sciences: first, it has a long cultivation time; and second, it requires considerably more space for growth. Here, we introduce a biotron breeding system, which allows rapid and reliable rice cultivation using a well-equipped artificial environmental chamber. This system involves use of regulation of CO₂ levels, removal of tillers and embryo rescue to overcome the disadvantages of rice cultivation. The rice cultivars Nipponbare, Koshihikari, Taichung 65 and Kasalath all showed vigorous growth and sufficient seed production in the biotron breeding system with accelerated flowering time. Nipponbare, which was the earliest among these cultivars, flowered at about 50 d after sowing. The life cycle of these plants could be further shortened using an embryo rescue technique on immature seeds at 7 d after pollination, thereby avoiding the lengthy process of seed maturation. Overall, it was possible to shorten the life cycle of Nipponbare to about 2 months under the controlled conditions. Furthermore, controlled crosses, which can be difficult with conventional cultivation methods, were easy to perform as we could control the exact timing of anther dehiscence. Thus, our biotron breeding system offers a valuable new approach to genetic and breeding studies in rice.

  5. Extent of linkage disequilibrium in large breed dogs: chromosomal and breed variation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Purpose: Understanding extent of linkage disequilibrium (LD) is a crucial component for successful utilization of genome-wide association studies (GWAS). The extent of LD in the dog has been described based upon small marker sets in multiple breeds and studies. Understanding variation in LD on a per...

  6. Combining Breeding Bird Survey and distance sampling to estimate density of migrant and breeding birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Somershoe, S.G.; Twedt, D.J.; Reid, B.

    2006-01-01

    We combined Breeding Bird Survey point count protocol and distance sampling to survey spring migrant and breeding birds in Vicksburg National Military Park on 33 days between March and June of 2003 and 2004. For 26 of 106 detected species, we used program DISTANCE to estimate detection probabilities and densities from 660 3-min point counts in which detections were recorded within four distance annuli. For most species, estimates of detection probability, and thereby density estimates, were improved through incorporation of the proportion of forest cover at point count locations as a covariate. Our results suggest Breeding Bird Surveys would benefit from the use of distance sampling and a quantitative characterization of habitat at point count locations. During spring migration, we estimated that the most common migrant species accounted for a population of 5000-9000 birds in Vicksburg National Military Park (636 ha). Species with average populations of 300 individuals during migration were: Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Polioptila caerulea), Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum), White-eyed Vireo (Vireo griseus), Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea), and Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula). Of 56 species that bred in Vicksburg National Military Park, we estimated that the most common 18 species accounted for 8150 individuals. The six most abundant breeding species, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, White-eyed Vireo, Summer Tanager (Piranga rubra), Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis), Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus), and Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater), accounted for 5800 individuals.

  7. Breeding phenology and winter activity predict subsequent breeding success in a trans-global migratory seabird.

    PubMed

    Shoji, A; Aris-Brosou, S; Culina, A; Fayet, A; Kirk, H; Padget, O; Juarez-Martinez, I; Boyle, D; Nakata, T; Perrins, C M; Guilford, T

    2015-10-01

    Inter-seasonal events are believed to connect and affect reproductive performance (RP) in animals. However, much remains unknown about such carry-over effects (COEs), in particular how behaviour patterns during highly mobile life-history stages, such as migration, affect RP. To address this question, we measured at-sea behaviour in a long-lived migratory seabird, the Manx shearwater (Puffinus puffinus) and obtained data for individual migration cycles over 5 years, by tracking with geolocator/immersion loggers, along with 6 years of RP data. We found that individual breeding and non-breeding phenology correlated with subsequent RP, with birds hyperactive during winter more likely to fail to reproduce. Furthermore, parental investment during one year influenced breeding success during the next, a COE reflecting the trade-off between current and future RP. Our results suggest that different life-history stages interact to influence RP in the next breeding season, so that behaviour patterns during winter may be important determinants of variation in subsequent fitness among individuals.

  8. To breed or not to breed: endocrine response to mercury contamination by an Arctic seabird.

    PubMed

    Tartu, Sabrina; Goutte, Aurélie; Bustamante, Paco; Angelier, Frédéric; Moe, Børge; Clément-Chastel, Céline; Bech, Claus; Gabrielsen, Geir Wing; Bustnes, Jan Ove; Chastel, Olivier

    2013-08-23

    Mercury, a ubiquitous toxic element, is known to alter expression of sex steroids and to impair reproduction across vertebrates but the mechanisms underlying these effects are not clearly identified. We examined whether contamination by mercury predicts the probability to skip reproduction in black-legged kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla) from Svalbard. We also manipulated the endocrine system to investigate the mechanism underlying this relationship. During the pre-laying period, we injected exogenous GnRH (gonadotropin-releasing hormone) to test the ability of the pituitary to release luteinizing hormone (LH, a key hormone for the release of sex steroids and hence breeding) in relation to mercury burden. Birds that skipped reproduction had significantly higher mercury concentration in blood than breeders. Endocrine profiles of these birds also varied based on breeding status (breeders versus non-breeders), mercury contamination and sex. Specifically, in skippers (birds that did not breed), baseline LH decreased with increasing mercury concentration in males, whereas it increased in females. GnRH-induced LH levels increased with increasing mercury concentration in both sexes. These results suggest that mercury contamination may disrupt GnRH input to the pituitary. Thus, high mercury concentration could affect the ability of long-lived birds to modulate their reproductive effort (skipping or breeding) according to ongoing environmental changes in the Arctic, thereby impacting population dynamics.

  9. Achieving Equity in an Evolving Healthcare System: Opportunities and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Joni Strom; Walker, Rebekah J.; Egede, Leonard E.

    2015-01-01

    For decades, disparities in health have been well documented in the United States and regrettably, remain prevalent despite evidence and appeals for their elimination. Compared to the majority, racial and ethnic minorities continue to have poorer health status and health outcomes for most chronic conditions including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and end-stage renal disease. Many factors, such as affordability, access, and diversity in the healthcare system, influence care and outcomes, creating challenges that make the task of eliminating health disparities and achieving health equity daunting and elusive. Novel strategies are needed to bring about much needed change in the complex and evolving United States health care system. Although not exhaustive, opportunities such as 1) developing standardized race measurements across health systems, 2) implementing effective interventions, 3) improving workforce diversity, 4) utilizing technological advances, and 5) adopting practices such as personalized medicine may serve as appropriate starting points for moving towards health equity. Over the past several decades, diversity in the U.S. population has increased significantly and is expected to increase exponentially in the near future. As the population becomes more diverse, it is important to recognize the possibilities of new and emerging disparities. It is imperative that steps are taken to eliminate the current gap in care and prevent new disparities from developing. Therefore, we present challenges and offer recommendations for facilitating the process of eliminating health disparities and achieving health equity across diverse populations. PMID:26802756

  10. The Evolving Diagnostic and Genetic Landscapes of Autism Spectrum Disorder.

    PubMed

    Ziats, Mark N; Rennert, Owen M

    2016-01-01

    The autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are a heterogeneous set of neurodevelopmental syndromes defined by impairments in verbal and non-verbal communication, restricted social interaction, and the presence of stereotyped patterns of behavior. The prevalence of ASD is rising, and the diagnostic criteria and clinical perspectives on the disorder continue to evolve in parallel. Although the majority of individuals with ASD will not have an identifiable genetic cause, almost 25% of cases have identifiable causative DNA variants. The rapidly improving ability to identify genetic mutations because of advances in next generation sequencing, coupled with previous epidemiological studies demonstrating high heritability of ASD, have led to many recent attempts to identify causative genetic mutations underlying the ASD phenotype. However, although hundreds of mutations have been identified to date, they are either rare variants affecting only a handful of ASD patients, or are common variants in the general population conferring only a small risk for ASD. Furthermore, the genes implicated thus far are heterogeneous in their structure and function, hampering attempts to understand shared molecular mechanisms among all ASD patients; an understanding that is crucial for the development of targeted diagnostics and therapies. However, new work is beginning to suggest that the heterogeneous set of genes implicated in ASD may ultimately converge on a few common pathways. In this review, we discuss the parallel evolution of our diagnostic and genetic understanding of autism spectrum disorders, and highlight recent attempts to infer common biology underlying this complicated syndrome.

  11. Achieving Equity in an Evolving Healthcare System: Opportunities and Challenges.

    PubMed

    Williams, Joni Strom; Walker, Rebekah J; Egede, Leonard E

    2016-01-01

    For decades, disparities in health have been well documented in the United States and regrettably, remain prevalent despite evidence and appeals for their elimination. Compared with the majority, racial and ethnic minorities continue to have poorer health status and health outcomes for most chronic conditions, including diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular disease, cancer and end-stage renal disease. Many factors, such as affordability, access and diversity in the healthcare system, influence care and outcomes, creating challenges that make the task of eliminating health disparities and achieving health equity daunting and elusive. Novel strategies are needed to bring about much needed change in the complex and evolving United States healthcare system. Although not exhaustive, opportunities such as (1) developing standardized race measurements across health systems, (2) implementing effective interventions, (3) improving workforce diversity, (4) using technological advances and (5) adopting practices such as personalized medicine may serve as appropriate starting points for moving toward health equity. Over the past several decades, diversity in the U.S. population has increased significantly and is expected to increase exponentially in the near future. As the population becomes more diverse, it is important to recognize the possibilities of new and emerging disparities. It is imperative that steps are taken to eliminate the current gap in care and prevent new disparities from developing. Therefore, we present challenges and offer recommendations for facilitating the process of eliminating health disparities and achieving health equity across diverse populations.

  12. FLOPROS: an evolving global database of flood protection standards

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scussolini, Paolo; Aerts, Jeroen C. J. H.; Jongman, Brenden; Bouwer, Laurens M.; Winsemius, Hessel C.; de Moel, Hans; Ward, Philip J.

    2016-05-01

    With projected changes in climate, population and socioeconomic activity located in flood-prone areas, the global assessment of flood risk is essential to inform climate change policy and disaster risk management. Whilst global flood risk models exist for this purpose, the accuracy of their results is greatly limited by the lack of information on the current standard of protection to floods, with studies either neglecting this aspect or resorting to crude assumptions. Here we present a first global database of FLOod PROtection Standards, FLOPROS, which comprises information in the form of the flood return period associated with protection measures, at different spatial scales. FLOPROS comprises three layers of information, and combines them into one consistent database. The design layer contains empirical information about the actual standard of existing protection already in place; the policy layer contains information on protection standards from policy regulations; and the model layer uses a validated modelling approach to calculate protection standards. The policy layer and the model layer can be considered adequate proxies for actual protection standards included in the design layer, and serve to increase the spatial coverage of the database. Based on this first version of FLOPROS, we suggest a number of strategies to further extend and increase the resolution of the database. Moreover, as the database is intended to be continually updated, while flood protection standards are changing with new interventions, FLOPROS requires input from the flood risk community. We therefore invite researchers and practitioners to contribute information to this evolving database by corresponding to the authors.

  13. FLOPROS: an evolving global database of flood protection standards

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scussolini, P.; Aerts, J. C. J. H.; Jongman, B.; Bouwer, L. M.; Winsemius, H. C.; de Moel, H.; Ward, P. J.

    2015-12-01

    With the projected changes in climate, population and socioeconomic activity located in flood-prone areas, the global assessment of the flood risk is essential to inform climate change policy and disaster risk management. Whilst global flood risk models exist for this purpose, the accuracy of their results is greatly limited by the lack of information on the current standard of protection to floods, with studies either neglecting this aspect or resorting to crude assumptions. Here we present a first global database of FLOod PROtection Standards, FLOPROS, which comprises information in the form of the flood return period associated with protection measures, at different spatial scales. FLOPROS comprises three layers of information, and combines them into one consistent database. The Design layer contains empirical information about the actual standard of existing protection already in place, while the Policy layer and the Model layer are proxies for such protection standards, and serve to increase the spatial coverage of the database. The Policy layer contains information on protection standards from policy regulations; and the Model layer uses a validated modeling approach to calculate protection standards. Based on this first version of FLOPROS, we suggest a number of strategies to further extend and increase the resolution of the database. Moreover, as the database is intended to be continually updated, while flood protection standards are changing with new interventions, FLOPROS requires input from the flood risk community. We therefore invite researchers and practitioners to contribute information to this evolving database by corresponding to the authors.

  14. The Evolving Diagnostic and Genetic Landscapes of Autism Spectrum Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Ziats, Mark N.; Rennert, Owen M.

    2016-01-01

    The autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are a heterogeneous set of neurodevelopmental syndromes defined by impairments in verbal and non-verbal communication, restricted social interaction, and the presence of stereotyped patterns of behavior. The prevalence of ASD is rising, and the diagnostic criteria and clinical perspectives on the disorder continue to evolve in parallel. Although the majority of individuals with ASD will not have an identifiable genetic cause, almost 25% of cases have identifiable causative DNA variants. The rapidly improving ability to identify genetic mutations because of advances in next generation sequencing, coupled with previous epidemiological studies demonstrating high heritability of ASD, have led to many recent attempts to identify causative genetic mutations underlying the ASD phenotype. However, although hundreds of mutations have been identified to date, they are either rare variants affecting only a handful of ASD patients, or are common variants in the general population conferring only a small risk for ASD. Furthermore, the genes implicated thus far are heterogeneous in their structure and function, hampering attempts to understand shared molecular mechanisms among all ASD patients; an understanding that is crucial for the development of targeted diagnostics and therapies. However, new work is beginning to suggest that the heterogeneous set of genes implicated in ASD may ultimately converge on a few common pathways. In this review, we discuss the parallel evolution of our diagnostic and genetic understanding of autism spectrum disorders, and highlight recent attempts to infer common biology underlying this complicated syndrome. PMID:27200076

  15. Infevers: an evolving mutation database for auto-inflammatory syndromes.

    PubMed

    Touitou, Isabelle; Lesage, Suzanne; McDermott, Michael; Cuisset, Laurence; Hoffman, Hal; Dode, Catherine; Shoham, Nitza; Aganna, Ebun; Hugot, Jean-Pierre; Wise, Carol; Waterham, Hans; Pugnere, Denis; Demaille, Jacques; Sarrauste de Menthiere, Cyril

    2004-09-01

    The Infevers database (http://fmf.igh.cnrs.fr/infevers/) was established in 2002 to provide investigators with access to a central source of information about all sequence variants associated with periodic fevers: Familial Mediterranean fever (FMF), TNF Receptor Associated Periodic Syndrome (TRAPS), Hyper IgD Syndrome (HIDS), Familial Cold Autoinflammatory Syndrome/Muckle-Wells Syndrome/Chronic Infantile Neurological Cutaneous and Articular Syndrome (FCAS/MWS/CINCA). The prototype of this group of disorders is FMF, a recessive disease characterized by recurrent bouts of unexplained inflammation. FMF is the pivotal member of an expanding family of autoinflammatory disorders, a new term coined to describe illnesses resulting from a defect of the innate immune response. Therefore, we decided to extend the Infevers database to genes connected with autoinflammatory diseases. We present here the biological content of the Infevers database, including the introduction of two new entries: Crohn/Blau and Pyogenic sterile arthritis, pyoderma gangrenosum and acne (PAPA syndrome). Infevers has a range of query capabilities, allowing for simple or complex interrogation of the database. Currently, the database contains 291 sequence variants in related genes (MEFV, TNFRSF1A, MVK, CARD15, PSTPIP1, and CIAS1), consisting of published data and personal communications, which has revealed or refined the preferential mutational sites for each gene. This database will continue to evolve in its content and to improve in its presentation.

  16. Advances in the Study of Moving Sediments and Evolving Seabeds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davies, Alan G.; Thorne, Peter D.

    2008-01-01

    Sands and mud are continually being transported around the world’s coastal seas due to the action of tides, wind and waves. The transport of these sediments modifies the boundary between the land and the sea, changing and reshaping its form. Sometimes the nearshore bathymetry evolves slowly over long time periods, at other times more rapidly due to natural episodic events or the introduction of manmade structures at the shoreline. For over half a century we have been trying to understand the physics of sediment transport processes and formulate predictive models. Although significant progress has been made, our capability to forecast the future behaviour of the coastal zone from basic principles is still relatively poor. However, innovative acoustic techniques for studying the fundamentals of sediment movement experimentally are now providing new insights, and it is expected that such observations, coupled with developing theoretical works, will allow us to take further steps towards the goal of predicting the evolution of coastlines and coastal bathymetry. This paper presents an overview of our existing predictive capabilities, primarily in the field of non-cohesive sediment transport, and highlights how new acoustic techniques are enabling our modelling efforts to achieve greater sophistication and accuracy. The paper is aimed at coastal scientists and managers seeking to understand how detailed physical studies can contribute to the improvement of coastal area models and, hence, inform coastal zone management strategies.

  17. Increased morphological asymmetry, evolvability and plasticity in human brain evolution.

    PubMed

    Gómez-Robles, Aida; Hopkins, William D; Sherwood, Chet C

    2013-06-22

    The study of hominin brain evolution relies mostly on evaluation of the endocranial morphology of fossil skulls. However, only some general features of external brain morphology are evident from endocasts, and many anatomical details can be difficult or impossible to examine. In this study, we use geometric morphometric techniques to evaluate inter- and intraspecific differences in cerebral morphology in a sample of in vivo magnetic resonance imaging scans of chimpanzees and humans, with special emphasis on the study of asymmetric variation. Our study reveals that chimpanzee-human differences in cerebral morphology are mainly symmetric; by contrast, there is continuity in asymmetric variation between species, with humans showing an increased range of variation. Moreover, asymmetric variation does not appear to be the result of allometric scaling at intraspecific levels, whereas symmetric changes exhibit very slight allometric effects within each species. Our results emphasize two key properties of brain evolution in the hominine clade: first, evolution of chimpanzee and human brains (and probably their last common ancestor and related species) is not strongly morphologically constrained, thus making their brains highly evolvable and responsive to selective pressures; second, chimpanzee and, especially, human brains show high levels of fluctuating asymmetry indicative of pronounced developmental plasticity. We infer that these two characteristics can have a role in human cognitive evolution.

  18. Evaluating and Evolving Metadata in Multiple Dialects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kozimore, John; Habermann, Ted; Gordon, Sean; Powers, Lindsay

    2016-01-01

    Despite many long-term homogenization efforts, communities continue to develop focused metadata standards along with related recommendations and (typically) XML representations (aka dialects) for sharing metadata content. Different representations easily become obstacles to sharing information because each representation generally requires a set of tools and skills that are designed, built, and maintained specifically for that representation. In contrast, community recommendations are generally described, at least initially, at a more conceptual level and are more easily shared. For example, most communities agree that dataset titles should be included in metadata records although they write the titles in different ways.

  19. Uncertain breeding: a short history of reproduction in monotremes.

    PubMed

    Temple-Smith, P; Grant, T

    2001-01-01

    Although much is known about the biology of monotremes, many important aspects of their reproduction remain unclear. Studies over the last century have provided valuable information on various aspects of monotreme reproduction including the structure and function of their reproductive system, breeding behaviour, sex determination and seasonality. All three living genera of monotremes have been successfully maintained in captivity, often for long periods, yet breeding has been rare and unpredictable. When breeding has occurred, however, significant gains in knowledge have ensued; for example a more accurate estimate of the gestation period of the platypus and the incubation period for the Tachyglossus egg. One of the great challenges for zoos has been to understand why breeding of monotremes is difficult to achieve. Analysis of breeding successes of platypuses and short-beaked echidnas provides some insights. The evidence suggests that although annual breeding seasons are regionally predictable, individual adult females breed unpredictably, with some showing breeding intervals of many years. The reason for this variation in individual breeding intervals may be resource-dependant, influenced by social factors or may even be genetically induced. Better knowledge of factors that influence breeding intervals may improve the success of monotreme captive breeding programmes. More certainty in captive breeding is also an important issue for enterprises wishing to trade in Australian wildlife since current legislation limits export of Australian fauna for display to at least second-generation captive-bred individuals. Given their unique evolutionary position, knowledge of reproduction in monotremes needs to be gained in advance of any future population declines so that appropriate strategies can be developed to ensure their survival.

  20. The Evolvement of Automobile Steering System Based on TRIZ

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Xinjun; Zhang, Shuang

    Products and techniques pass through a process of birth, growth, maturity, death and quit the stage like biological evolution process. The developments of products and techniques conform to some evolvement rules. If people know and hold these rules, they can design new kind of products and forecast the develop trends of the products. Thereby, enterprises can grasp the future technique directions of products, and make product and technique innovation. Below, based on TRIZ theory, the mechanism evolvement, the function evolvement and the appearance evolvement of automobile steering system had been analyzed and put forward some new ideas about future automobile steering system.

  1. The Breeding Bird Survey, 1967 and 1968

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Robbins, C.S.; Van Velzen, W.T.

    1969-01-01

    In the Breeding Bird Survey of North America, cooperators ran 982 survey routes in 1967 and 1,174 in 1968. All States except Hawaii and all Canadian Provinces except Newfoundland were included. Roadside routes are selected at random within 1-degree blocks of latitude and longitude. Each 24 1/2-mile route, with 3-minute stops spaced half a mile apart, is driven by automobile. All birds heard or seen at the stops are recorded on special forms, and the data are transferred to magnetic tape for analysis. The average number of birds of each species per route is tabulated by State and Province, presenting for the first time a record of the comparative abundance of each species across the continent. The sample size is given for each species recorded. A sophisticated analysis program, here employed for the first time, is used to compute weighted mean values of the survey results for selected species at the State, stratum, regional, and continental level. The statistical significance of year-to-year changes at the 80, 90, 95, and 99 percent levels of probability are part of the computer output. An index for comparing populations of each species from year to year is established, with 1968 as the base year. Maps show the breeding range and comparative abundance of selected species.

  2. Dynamics of ovarian follicles in breeding ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Esler, Daniel N.

    1994-01-01

    I quantified ovarian rapid follicle growth (RFG) and regression of postovulatory follicles of Northern Pintails (Anas acuta), American Wigeon (A. americana), and Lesser Scaup (Aythya affinis) by a method that accounted for within-day variation in follicle size. Objective methods for identifying onset of RFG also are presented; this is crucial for accurate classification of breeding status. Duration of RFG was estimated as 4.2, 5.1, and 5.0 days for pintails, wigeon, and scaup, respectively; these are shorter than previously reported. Diameters of follicles at the beginning of RFG were estimated to be 8.2, 6.9, and 7.9 mm for pintails, wigeon, and scaup, respectively. For all species, RFG was linear, using follicle diameters, and exponential, using dry masses. Models of RFG and postovulatory follicle regression have practical value for calculating nest initiation dates, number of developing follicles, clutch size, renesting intervals, and daily energy and nutrient commitment to reproduction of collected breeding females.

  3. Tornadic storm avoidance behavior in breeding songbirds.

    PubMed

    Streby, Henry M; Kramer, Gunnar R; Peterson, Sean M; Lehman, Justin A; Buehler, David A; Andersen, David E

    2015-01-05

    Migration is a common behavior used by animals of many taxa to occupy different habitats during different periods. Migrant birds are categorized as either facultative (i.e., those that are forced to migrate by some proximal cue, often weather) or obligate (i.e., those that migrate on a regular cycle). During migration, obligate migrants can curtail or delay flights in response to inclement weather or until favorable winds prevail, and they can temporarily reorient or reverse direction when ecological or meteorological obstacles are encountered. However, it is not known whether obligate migrants undertake facultative migrations and make large-scale movements in response to proximal cues outside of their regular migration periods. Here, we present the first documentation of obligate long-distance migrant birds undertaking a facultative migration, wherein breeding golden-winged warblers (Vermivora chrysoptera) carrying light-level geolocators performed a >1,500 km 5-day circumvention of a severe tornadic storm. The birds evacuated their breeding territories >24 hr before the arrival of the storm and atmospheric variation associated with it. The probable cue, radiating >1,000 km from tornadic storms, perceived by birds and influencing bird behavior and movements, is infrasound (i.e., sound below the range of human hearing). With the predicted increase in severity and frequency of similar storms as anthropogenic climate change progresses, understanding large-scale behavioral responses of animals to such events will be an important objective of future research.

  4. Sugars in peach fruit: a breeding perspective

    PubMed Central

    Cirilli, Marco; Bassi, Daniele; Ciacciulli, Angelo

    2016-01-01

    The last decade has been characterized by a decrease in peach (Prunus persica) fruit consumption in many countries, foremost due to unsatisfactory quality. The sugar content is one of the most important quality traits perceived by consumers, and the development of novel peach cultivars with sugar-enhanced content is a primary objective of breeding programs to revert the market inertia. Nevertheless, the progress reachable through classical phenotypic selection is limited by the narrow genetic bases of peach breeding material and by the complex quantitative nature of the trait, which is deeply affected by environmental conditions and agronomical management. The development of molecular markers applicable in MAS or MAB has become an essential strategy to boost the selection efficiency. Despite the enormous advances in ‘omics’ sciences, providing powerful tools for plant genotyping, the identification of the genetic bases of sugar-related traits is hindered by the lack of adequate phenotyping methods that are able to address strong within-plant variability. This review provides an overview of the current knowledge of the metabolic pathways and physiological mechanisms regulating sugar accumulation in peach fruit, the main advances in phenotyping approaches and genetic background, and finally addressing new research priorities and prospective for breeders. PMID:26816618

  5. Targeted Proteomics Approach for Precision Plant Breeding.

    PubMed

    Chawade, Aakash; Alexandersson, Erik; Bengtsson, Therese; Andreasson, Erik; Levander, Fredrik

    2016-02-05

    Selected reaction monitoring (SRM) is a targeted mass spectrometry technique that enables precise quantitation of hundreds of peptides in a single run. This technique provides new opportunities for multiplexed protein biomarker measurements. For precision plant breeding, DNA-based markers have been used extensively, but the potential of protein biomarkers has not been exploited. In this work, we developed an SRM marker panel with assays for 104 potato (Solanum tuberosum) peptides selected using univariate and multivariate statistics. Thereafter, using random forest classification, the prediction markers were identified for Phytopthora infestans resistance in leaves, P. infestans resistance in tubers, and plant yield in potato leaf secretome samples. The results suggest that the marker panel has the predictive potential for three traits, two of which have no commercial DNA markers so far. Furthermore, the marker panel was also tested and found to be applicable to potato clones not used during the marker development. The proposed workflow is thus a proof-of-concept for targeted proteomics as an efficient readout in accelerated breeding for complex and agronomically important traits.

  6. Breeding programs for smallholder sheep farming systems: I. Evaluation of alternative designs of breeding schemes.

    PubMed

    Gizaw, S; Rischkowsky, B; Valle-Zárate, A; Haile, A; van Arendonk, J A M; Mwai, A O; Dessie, T

    2014-10-01

    Village- and central nucleus-based schemes were simulated and evaluated for their relative bio-economic efficiencies, using Ethiopia's Menz sheep as example. The schemes were: village-based 2-tier (Scheme-1) and 1-tier (Scheme-2) cooperative village breeding schemes, dispersed village-based nuclei scheme (Scheme-3), conventional 2-tier central nucleus-based scheme (Scheme-4), and schemes linking a central nucleus and village multiplier nuclei with selection in central nucleus (Scheme-5) or in both central and village nuclei (Scheme-6). Among village-based schemes, Scheme-1 gave the highest genetic progress, while Scheme-2 was economically the most efficient with genetic gain in the breeding objective of Birr 5.6 and a profit of Birr 37.2/ewe/year. The central nucleus schemes were more efficient than the village schemes. Scheme-4 was the most efficient with genetic gain in the breeding objective of Birr 13.5 and a profit of Birr 71.2, but is operationally more difficult as it requires a very large central nucleus. The choice between village and central nucleus-based schemes would depend on local conditions (availability of infrastructure, logistics and technical knowhow and support). Linking central nucleus with village-based nuclei (Scheme-6) would be a feasible option to overcome the operational difficulties of the conventional central nucleus scheme. If a village-based breeding program is envisaged as should be the 1st step in most low-input systems, then Scheme-2 is the most efficient. To scale out to an entire Menz breed level, Scheme-3 would be recommended.

  7. Geometric Observers for Dynamically Evolving Curves

    PubMed Central

    Niethammer, Marc; Vela, Patricio A.; Tannenbaum, Allen

    2009-01-01

    This paper proposes a deterministic observer design for visual tracking based on nonparametric implicit (level-set) curve descriptions. The observer is continuous discrete with continuous-time system dynamics and discrete-time measurements. Its state-space consists of an estimated curve position augmented by additional states (e.g., velocities) associated with every point on the estimated curve. Multiple simulation models are proposed for state prediction. Measurements are performed through standard static segmentation algorithms and optical-flow computations. Special emphasis is given to the geometric formulation of the overall dynamical system. The discrete-time measurements lead to the problem of geometric curve interpolation and the discrete-time filtering of quantities propagated along with the estimated curve. Interpolation and filtering are intimately linked to the correspondence problem between curves. Correspondences are established by a Laplace-equation approach. The proposed scheme is implemented completely implicitly (by Eulerian numerical solutions of transport equations) and thus naturally allows for topological changes and subpixel accuracy on the computational grid. PMID:18421113

  8. The role of selective breeding and biosecurity in the prevention of disease in penaeid shrimp aquaculture.

    PubMed

    Moss, Shaun M; Moss, Dustin R; Arce, Steve M; Lightner, Donald V; Lotz, Jeffrey M

    2012-06-01

    About 3.5 million metric tons of farmed shrimp were produced globally in 2009 with an estimated value greater than USD$14.6 billion. Despite the economic importance of farmed shrimp, the global shrimp farming industry continues to be plagued by disease. There are a number of strategies a shrimp farmer can employ to mitigate crop loss from disease, including the use of Specific Pathogen Free (SPF), selectively bred shrimp and the adoption of on-farm biosecurity practices. Selective breeding for disease resistance began in the mid 1990s in response to outbreaks of Taura syndrome, caused by Taura syndrome virus (TSV), which devastated populations of farmed shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) throughout the Americas. Breeding programs designed to enhance TSV survival have generated valuable information about the quantitative genetics of disease resistance in shrimp and have produced shrimp families which exhibit high survival after TSV exposure. The commercial availability of these selected shrimp has benefitted the shrimp farming industry and TSV is no longer considered a major threat in many shrimp farming regions. Although selective breeding has been valuable in combating TSV, this approach has not been effective for other viral pathogens and selective breeding may not be the most effective strategy for the long-term viability of the industry. Cost-effective, on-farm biosecurity protocols can be more practical and less expensive than breeding programs designed to enhance disease resistance. Of particular importance is the use of SPF shrimp stocked in biosecure environments where physical barriers are in place to mitigate the introduction and spread of virulent pathogens.

  9. Breeding productivity and adult survival in nongame birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Martin, Thomas E.; DeSante, David F.; Paine, Charles R.; Donovan, Therese M.; Dettmers, Randy; Manolis, J.C.; Burton, K.

    1995-01-01

    Demographic data (breeding productivity and adult survival) provide the kind of early warning signal that allows detection of unhealthy populations in terms of productivity or survival problems (Martin and Guepel 1993). In addition, demographic data can help determine whether population declines are the result of low breeding productivity or low survival in migration or winter. Breeding productivity data also can help identify habitat conditions associated with successful and failed breeding attempts. Such information is critical for developing habitat- and land-management practices (Martin 1992). Here, we provide examples of the kinds of information that can be obtained by broad-scale demographic studies.

  10. Allele mining and enhanced genetic recombination for rice breeding.

    PubMed

    Leung, Hei; Raghavan, Chitra; Zhou, Bo; Oliva, Ricardo; Choi, Il Ryong; Lacorte, Vanica; Jubay, Mona Liza; Cruz, Casiana Vera; Gregorio, Glenn; Singh, Rakesh Kumar; Ulat, Victor Jun; Borja, Frances Nikki; Mauleon, Ramil; Alexandrov, Nickolai N; McNally, Kenneth L; Sackville Hamilton, Ruaraidh

    2015-12-01

    Traditional rice varieties harbour a large store of genetic diversity with potential to accelerate rice improvement. For a long time, this diversity maintained in the International Rice Genebank has not been fully used because of a lack of genome information. The publication of the first reference genome of Nipponbare by the International Rice Genome Sequencing Project (IRGSP) marked the beginning of a systematic exploration and use of rice diversity for genetic research and breeding. Since then, the Nipponbare genome has served as the reference for the assembly of many additional genomes. The recently completed 3000 Rice Genomes Project together with the public database (SNP-Seek) provides a new genomic and data resource that enables the identification of useful accessions for breeding. Using disease resistance traits as case studies, we demonstrated the power of allele mining in the 3,000 genomes for extracting accessions from the GeneBank for targeted phenotyping. Although potentially useful landraces can now be identified, their use in breeding is often hindered by unfavourable linkages. Efficient breeding designs are much needed to transfer the useful diversity to breeding. Multi-parent Advanced Generation InterCross (MAGIC) is a breeding design to produce highly recombined populations. The MAGIC approach can be used to generate pre-breeding populations with increased genotypic diversity and reduced linkage drag. Allele mining combined with a multi-parent breeding design can help convert useful diversity into breeding-ready genetic resources.

  11. The Question of Mandatory Continuing Education for Professionals.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garganta, Kevin J.

    Once the need for continuing learning in professional fields was acknowledged, the idea of voluntary learning evolved into a requirement for mandatory continuing education (MCE) in many professions. Despite the variation among professions and individual states' policies, MCE for professionals is a well-entrenched fact of life for many…

  12. Evaluation of breeding objectives for purebred and crossbred selection schemes for adoption in indigenous chicken breeding programmes.

    PubMed

    Okeno, T O; Kahi, A K; Peters, K J

    2013-01-01

    1. The aim of the study was to evaluate the genetic and economic breeding objectives for an indigenous chicken (IC) breeding programme in Kenya. 2. A closed three-tier nucleus breeding programme with three breeding objectives and two selection schemes was simulated. The breeding objectives included IC dual-purpose (ICD) for both eggs and meat, IC layer (ICL) for eggs and IC broiler (ICB) for meat production. 3. Pure line selection scheme (PLS) for development of IC pure breeds and crossbreeding scheme (CBS) for the production of hybrids were considered. Two-and three-way crossbreeding strategies were evaluated under CBS and the impact of nucleus size on genetic gains and profitability of the breeding programme were investigated. 4. Males were the main contributors to genetic gains. The highest genetic gains for egg number (2·71 eggs) and growth traits (1·74 g average daily gain and 57·96 g live weight at 16 weeks) were realised under PLS in ICL and ICB, respectively. 5. The genetic response for age at first egg was desirable in all the breeding objectives, while that for fertility and hatchability were only favourable under ICL and PLS in ICD. Faecal egg count and immune antibody response had low, but positive gains except under PLS where the later was unfavourable. ICB was the most profitable breeding objective, followed by ICD and ICL under all the selection schemes. 6. Although PLS was superior in genetic gains and profitability and recommended in breeding programmes targeting ICL and ICB, a three line CBS should be considered in development of a dual-purpose breed. 7. Increasing the nucleus size beyond 5% of the IC population was not attractive as it resulted in declining profitability of the breeding programme.

  13. The evolving ethics of infant dialysis

    PubMed Central

    Lantos, John D; Warady, Bradley A

    2012-01-01

    In this paper, we review ethical issues that arise when families and doctors face clinical decisions about renal replacement therapy for an infant with end-stage renal disease (ESRD). Over the last twenty years, many centers have begun to routinely offer renal replacement therapy. However, doctors and nurses both continue to view such therapy as optional, rather than mandatory. We speculate that the burdens of therapy on the family, and the uncertainties about satisfactory outcomes have led to a situation in which renal replacement therapy remains desirable but non-obligatory. We discuss the reasons why this is likely to remain so, and the ways in which renal replacement therapy for infants with ESRD is similar to, or different from, other clinical situations in pediatrics. Finally, we propose a research agenda to answer questions that are crucial to making good ethical decisions about infant dialysis. PMID:23131864

  14. Comparison of Model Predictions and Laboratory Observations of Transgene Frequencies in Continuously-Breeding Mosquito Populations

    PubMed Central

    Valerio, Laura; North, Ace; Collins, C. Matilda; Mumford, John D.; Facchinelli, Luca; Spaccapelo, Roberta; Benedict, Mark Q.

    2016-01-01

    The persistence of transgenes in the environment is a consideration in risk assessments of transgenic organisms. Combining mathematical models that predict the frequency of transgenes and experimental demonstrations can validate the model predictions, or can detect significant biological deviations that were neither apparent nor included as model parameters. In order to assess the correlation between predictions and observations, models were constructed to estimate the frequency of a transgene causing male sexual sterility in simulated populations of a malaria mosquito Anopheles gambiae that were seeded with transgenic females at various proportions. Concurrently, overlapping-generation laboratory populations similar to those being modeled were initialized with various starting transgene proportions, and the subsequent proportions of transgenic individuals in populations were determined weekly until the transgene disappeared. The specific transgene being tested contained a homing endonuclease gene expressed in testes, I-PpoI, that cleaves the ribosomal DNA and results in complete male sexual sterility with no effect on female fertility. The transgene was observed to disappear more rapidly than the model predicted in all cases. The period before ovipositions that contained no transgenic progeny ranged from as little as three weeks after cage initiation to as long as 11 weeks. PMID:27669312

  15. Comparison of Model Predictions and Laboratory Observations of Transgene Frequencies in Continuously-Breeding Mosquito Populations.

    PubMed

    Valerio, Laura; North, Ace; Collins, C Matilda; Mumford, John D; Facchinelli, Luca; Spaccapelo, Roberta; Benedict, Mark Q

    2016-09-22

    The persistence of transgenes in the environment is a consideration in risk assessments of transgenic organisms. Combining mathematical models that predict the frequency of transgenes and experimental demonstrations can validate the model predictions, or can detect significant biological deviations that were neither apparent nor included as model parameters. In order to assess the correlation between predictions and observations, models were constructed to estimate the frequency of a transgene causing male sexual sterility in simulated populations of a malaria mosquito Anopheles gambiae that were seeded with transgenic females at various proportions. Concurrently, overlapping-generation laboratory populations similar to those being modeled were initialized with various starting transgene proportions, and the subsequent proportions of transgenic individuals in populations were determined weekly until the transgene disappeared. The specific transgene being tested contained a homing endonuclease gene expressed in testes, I-PpoI, that cleaves the ribosomal DNA and results in complete male sexual sterility with no effect on female fertility. The transgene was observed to disappear more rapidly than the model predicted in all cases. The period before ovipositions that contained no transgenic progeny ranged from as little as three weeks after cage initiation to as long as 11 weeks.

  16. Breeding Bird Community Continues to Colonize Riparian Buffers Ten Years after Harvest

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Riparian ecosystems integrate aquatic and terrestrial communities and often contain unique assemblages of flora and fauna. Retention of forested buffers along riparian habitats is a commonly employed practice to reduce potential negative effects of land use on aquatic systems. However, very few studies have examined long-term population and community responses to buffers, leading to considerable uncertainty about effectiveness of this practice for achieving conservation and management outcomes. We examined short- (1–2 years) and long-term (~10 years) avian community responses (occupancy and abundance) to riparian buffer prescriptions to clearcut logging silvicultural practices in the Pacific Northwest USA. We used a Before-After-Control-Impact experimental approach and temporally replicated point counts analyzed within a Bayesian framework. Our experimental design consisted of forested control sites with no harvest, sites with relatively narrow (~13m) forested buffers on each side of the stream, and sites with wider (~30m) and more variable width unharvested buffer. Buffer treatments exhibited a 31–44% increase in mean species richness in the post-harvest years, a pattern most evident 10 years post-harvest. Post-harvest, species turnover was much higher on both treatments (63–74%) relative to the controls (29%). We did not find evidence of local extinction for any species but found strong evidence (no overlap in 95% credible intervals) for an increase in site occupancy on both Narrow (short-term: 7%; long-term 29%) and Wide buffers (short-term: 21%; long-term 93%) relative to controls after harvest. We did not find a treatment effect on total avian abundance. When assessing relationships between buffer width and site level abundance of four riparian specialists, we did not find strong evidence of reduced abundance in Narrow or Wide buffers. Silviculture regulations in this region dictate average buffer widths on small and large permanent streams that range from ~22–25 m. Guidelines for this region are within the range of buffers included in our study, in which we observed no evidence for avian species loss or for a decline in species abundance (including riparian associated species). PMID:26637120

  17. Breeding Bird Community Continues to Colonize Riparian Buffers Ten Years after Harvest.

    PubMed

    Pearson, Scott F; Giovanini, Jack; Jones, Jay E; Kroll, Andrew J

    2015-01-01

    Riparian ecosystems integrate aquatic and terrestrial communities and often contain unique assemblages of flora and fauna. Retention of forested buffers along riparian habitats is a commonly employed practice to reduce potential negative effects of land use on aquatic systems. However, very few studies have examined long-term population and community responses to buffers, leading to considerable uncertainty about effectiveness of this practice for achieving conservation and management outcomes. We examined short- (1-2 years) and long-term (~10 years) avian community responses (occupancy and abundance) to riparian buffer prescriptions to clearcut logging silvicultural practices in the Pacific Northwest USA. We used a Before-After-Control-Impact experimental approach and temporally replicated point counts analyzed within a Bayesian framework. Our experimental design consisted of forested control sites with no harvest, sites with relatively narrow (~13 m) forested buffers on each side of the stream, and sites with wider (~30 m) and more variable width unharvested buffer. Buffer treatments exhibited a 31-44% increase in mean species richness in the post-harvest years, a pattern most evident 10 years post-harvest. Post-harvest, species turnover was much higher on both treatments (63-74%) relative to the controls (29%). We did not find evidence of local extinction for any species but found strong evidence (no overlap in 95% credible intervals) for an increase in site occupancy on both Narrow (short-term: 7%; long-term 29%) and Wide buffers (short-term: 21%; long-term 93%) relative to controls after harvest. We did not find a treatment effect on total avian abundance. When assessing relationships between buffer width and site level abundance of four riparian specialists, we did not find strong evidence of reduced abundance in Narrow or Wide buffers. Silviculture regulations in this region dictate average buffer widths on small and large permanent streams that range from ~22-25 m. Guidelines for this region are within the range of buffers included in our study, in which we observed no evidence for avian species loss or for a decline in species abundance (including riparian associated species).

  18. Determination of non-market values to inform conservation strategies for the threatened Alistana-Sanabresa cattle breed.

    PubMed

    Martin-Collado, D; Diaz, C; Drucker, A G; Carabaño, M J; Zander, K K

    2014-08-01

    Livestock breed-related public good functions are often used to justify support for endangered breed conservation despite the fact that little is known about such non-market values. We show how stated preference techniques can be used to assess the non-market values that people place on livestock breeds. Through the application of a case study choice experiment survey in Zamora province, Spain, the total economic value (TEV) of the threatened Alistana-Sanabresa (AS) cattle breed was investigated. An analysis of the relative importance of the non-market components of its TEV and an assessment of the socio-economic variables that influence people's valuation of such components is used to inform conservation strategy design. Overall, the findings reveal that the AS breed had significant non-market values associated with it and that the value that respondents placed on each specific public good function also varied significantly. Functions related with indirect use cultural and existence values were much more highly valued than landscape maintenance values. These high cultural and existence values (totalling over 80% of TEV) suggest that an AS in situ conservation strategy will be required to secure such values. As part of such a strategy, incentive mechanisms will be needed to permit farmers to capture some of these public good values and thus be able to afford to maintain breed population numbers at socially desirable levels. One such mechanism could be related to the development of breed-related agritourism initiatives, with a view to enhancing private good values and providing an important addition to continued direct support. Where linked with cultural dimensions, niche product market development, including through improving AS breed-related product quality and brand recognition may also have a role to play as part of such an overall conservation and use strategy. We conclude that livestock breed conservation strategies with the highest potential to maximise

  19. A quiet harvest: linkage between ritual, seed selection and the historical use of the finger-bladed knife as a traditional plant breeding tool in Ifugao, Philippines.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Kevin M

    2017-01-13

    The transverse harvest knife, also commonly called the finger or finger-bladed knife, has been utilized by rice farmers in southeast Asia for many centuries. The finger knife persisted in many traditional cultures long after the introduction of the sickle, a tool which provided farmers with the means to execute a much faster harvest. Several theories in interpretative archaeology have attempted to account for this rejection of more modern technological innovations. These theories, which include community-based social organization ideas and practical reasons for the continued use of the finger knife, are presented in this paper. Here I suggest an alternate theory based on a re-interpretation of existing research and fusion of existing theories: the primary reason for the historical and continued use of the finger knife is for seed selection through a centuries old tradition of plant breeding. Though I accept the accuracy of the practical and community-based, socio-cultural reasons for the use of the finger knife put forth by other authors, I suggest that seed selection and genetic improvement was the driving factor in the use of the finger knife. Indeed, intricate planting and harvesting rituals, which both ensured and encouraged varietal conservation and improvement co-evolved with the use of the finger knife as the primary harvest tool due to its unique ability to aid the farmer in the art and science of seed selection. When combined with previous ideas, this interpretative theory, based on the connection between ethnoagronomy and material culture, may provide a more complete picture of the story around the persistence of the finger knife in traditional rice-growing cultures in southeast Asia. I focus my theory on the terrace-building Ifugao people in the mountainous Cordillera region of northcentral Philippines; however, to put the use of the finger into a wider regional context, I draw from examples of the use of the finger knife in other traditional cultures

  20. Animals Used in Research and Education, 1966-2016: Evolving Attitudes, Policies, and Relationships.

    PubMed

    Lairmore, Michael D; Ilkiw, Jan

    2015-01-01

    Since the inception of the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC), the use of animals in research and education has been a central element of the programs of member institutions. As veterinary education and research programs have evolved over the past 50 years, so too have societal views and regulatory policies. AAVMC member institutions have continually responded to these events by exchanging best practices in training their students in the framework of comparative medicine and the needs of society. Animals provide students and faculty with the tools to learn the fundamental knowledge and skills of veterinary medicine and scientific discovery. The study of animal models has contributed extensively to medicine, veterinary medicine, and basic sciences as these disciplines seek to understand life processes. Changing societal views over the past 50 years have provided active examination and continued refinement of the use of animals in veterinary medical education and research. The future use of animals to educate and train veterinarians will likely continue to evolve as technological advances are applied to experimental design and educational systems. Natural animal models of both human and animal health will undoubtedly continue to serve a significant role in the education of veterinarians and in the development of new treatments of animal and human disease. As it looks to the future, the AAVMC as an organization will need to continue to support and promote best practices in the humane care and appropriate use of animals in both education and research.

  1. Benzimidazole-resistant gastrointestinal nematodes in indigenous Chiapas and Pelibuey sheep breeds from Chiapas, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Liébano-Hernández, E; González-Olvera, M; Vázquez-Peláez, C; Mendoza-de-Gives, P; Ramírez-Vargas, G; Peralta-Lailson, M; Reyes-García, M E; Osorio, J; Sánchez-Pineda, H; López-Arellano, M E

    2015-01-01

    Because of the natural adaptation of Mexican sheep, the aim of the present study was to identify the presence or absence of gastrointestinal parasitic nematodes (GIN) resistant to benzimidazole (BZ) in both Chiapas and Pelibuey sheep breeds on local farms. Both male and female GIN-infected grazing sheep of the two breeds were selected. Sheep faecal samples were collected to obtain infective larvae (L3). This evolving stage of the parasite was used for taxonomic identification of the genus, based on its morphological characteristics. BZ anthelmintic resistance was evaluated using a nematode-compound in vitro interaction bioassay and the allele-specific polymerase chain reaction technique to detect mutations of residues 198 and 200 on isotype 1 of the β-tubulin gene. Three BZ-based compounds (febendazole (FBZ), tiabendazole (TBZ) and albendazole (ABZ)) at concentrations of 1, 0.5, 0.25, 0.125, 0.062 and 0.03 mg/ml were used to estimate the anthelmintic efficacy and lethal dose (LD50, LD90 and LD99) of the drugs. Two parasitic nematodes, Haemonchus and Teladorsagia, were identified in both isolates. Also, the proportions of anthelmintic resistance identified in GIN of the two sheep breeds were 68% in isolates from the Chiapas breed and 71.8% in the Pelibuey breed. The specific lethal activity obtained with FBZ was higher than 90%. However, TBZ and ABZ showed a lethal activity lower than 50%. High variability in the discriminating dose values was found among the BZ drugs. For example, FBZ LD ranged from 0.01 to 1.20 mg/ml; on the other hand, TBZ and ABZ required a dose ranging from 0.178 to 759 mg/ml. In addition, amino acid changes of Phe (TTC) to Tyr (TAC) at codon 200 of the β-tubulin gene, showing resistance to BZ, and no changes at codon 198 Glu (GAA) to Ala (GCA) were observed for both isolates. These results confirmed the presence of a genetic mutation associated with BZ in both Chiapas and Pelibuey nematode isolates.

  2. Non-Breeding Eusocial Mole-Rats Produce Viable Sperm—Spermiogram and Functional Testicular Morphology of Fukomys anselli

    PubMed Central

    Garcia Montero, Angelica; Vole, Christiane; Burda, Hynek; Malkemper, Erich Pascal; Holtze, Susanne; Morhart, Michaela; Saragusty, Joseph; Hildebrandt, Thomas B.; Begall, Sabine

    2016-01-01

    Ansell’s mole-rats (Fukomys anselli) are subterranean rodents living in families composed of about 20 members with a single breeding pair and their non-breeding offspring. Most of them remain with their parents for their lifetime and help to maintain and defend the natal burrow system, forage, and care for younger siblings. Since incest avoidance is based on individual recognition (and not on social suppression) we expect that non-breeders produce viable sperm spontaneously. We compared the sperm of breeding and non-breeding males, obtained by electroejaculation and found no significant differences in sperm parameters between both groups. Here, we used electroejaculation to obtain semen for the first time in a subterranean mammal. Spermiogram analysis revealed no significant differences in sperm parameters between breeders and non-breeders. We found significantly larger testes (measured on autopsies and on living animals per ultrasonography) of breeders compared to non-breeders (with body mass having a significant effect). There were no marked histological differences between breeding and non-breeding males, and the relative area occupied by Leydig cells and seminiferous tubules on histological sections, respectively, was not significantly different between both groups. The seminiferous epithelium and to a lesser degree the interstitial testicular tissue are characterized by lesions (vacuolar degenerations), however, this feature does not hinder fertilization even in advanced stages of life. The continuous production of viable sperm also in sexually abstinent non-breeders might be best understood in light of the mating and social system of Fukomys anselli, and the potential to found a new family following an unpredictable and rare encounter with an unfamiliar female (“provoked or induced dispersal”). Apparently, the non-breeders do not reproduce because they do not copulate but not because they would be physiologically infertile. The significantly increased

  3. Non-Breeding Eusocial Mole-Rats Produce Viable Sperm--Spermiogram and Functional Testicular Morphology of Fukomys anselli.

    PubMed

    Garcia Montero, Angelica; Vole, Christiane; Burda, Hynek; Malkemper, Erich Pascal; Holtze, Susanne; Morhart, Michaela; Saragusty, Joseph; Hildebrandt, Thomas B; Begall, Sabine

    2016-01-01

    Ansell's mole-rats (Fukomys anselli) are subterranean rodents living in families composed of about 20 members with a single breeding pair and their non-breeding offspring. Most of them remain with their parents for their lifetime and help to maintain and defend the natal burrow system, forage, and care for younger siblings. Since incest avoidance is based on individual recognition (and not on social suppression) we expect that non-breeders produce viable sperm spontaneously. We compared the sperm of breeding and non-breeding males, obtained by electroejaculation and found no significant differences in sperm parameters between both groups. Here, we used electroejaculation to obtain semen for the first time in a subterranean mammal. Spermiogram analysis revealed no significant differences in sperm parameters between breeders and non-breeders. We found significantly larger testes (measured on autopsies and on living animals per ultrasonography) of breeders compared to non-breeders (with body mass having a significant effect). There were no marked histological differences between breeding and non-breeding males, and the relative area occupied by Leydig cells and seminiferous tubules on histological sections, respectively, was not significantly different between both groups. The seminiferous epithelium and to a lesser degree the interstitial testicular tissue are characterized by lesions (vacuolar degenerations), however, this feature does not hinder fertilization even in advanced stages of life. The continuous production of viable sperm also in sexually abstinent non-breeders might be best understood in light of the mating and social system of Fukomys anselli, and the potential to found a new family following an unpredictable and rare encounter with an unfamiliar female ("provoked or induced dispersal"). Apparently, the non-breeders do not reproduce because they do not copulate but not because they would be physiologically infertile. The significantly increased testes

  4. Genetic and genomic analyses for economically important traits and their applications in molecular breeding of cultured fish.

    PubMed

    Tong, JinGou; Sun, XiaoWen

    2015-02-01

    The traits of cultured fish must continually be genetically improved to supply high-quality animal protein for human consumption. Economically important fish traits are controlled by multiple gene quantitative trait loci (QTL), most of which have minor effects, but a few genes may have major effects useful for molecular breeding. In this review, we chose relevant studies on some of the most intensively cultured fish and concisely summarize progress on identifying and verifying QTLs for such traits as growth, disease and stress resistance and sex in recent decades. The potential applications of these major-effect genes and their associated markers in marker-assisted selection and molecular breeding, as well as future research directions are also discussed. These genetic and genomic analyses will be valuable for elucidating the mechanisms modulating economically important traits and to establish more effective molecular breeding techniques in fish.

  5. Genotyping of β-Lactoglobulin gene by PCR-RFLP in Sahiwal and Tharparkar cattle breeds

    PubMed Central

    Rachagani, Satyanarayana; Gupta, Ishwar Dayal; Gupta, Neelam; Gupta, SC

    2006-01-01

    Background Improvement of efficiency and economic returns is an important goal in dairy farming, as in any agricultural enterprise. The primary goal of dairy industry has been to identify an efficient and economical way of increasing milk production and its constituents without increasing the size of the dairy herd. Selection of animals with desirable genotypes and mating them to produce the next generation has been the basis of livestock improvement and this would continue to remain the same in the coming years. The use of polymorphic genes as detectable molecular markers is a promising alternative to the current methods of trait selection once these genes are proven to be associated with traits of interest in animals. The point mutations in exon IV of bovine β-Lactoglobulin gene determine two allelic variants A and B. These variants were distinguished by Polymerase Chain Reaction and Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) analysis in two indigenous Bos indicus breeds viz. Sahiwal and Tharparkar cattle. DNA samples (228 in Sahiwal and 86 in Tharparkar) were analyzed for allelic variants of β-Lactoglobulin gene. Polymorphism was detected by digestion of PCR amplified products with Hae III enzyme, and separation on 12% non-denaturing gels and resolved by silver staining. Results The allele B of β-Lactoglobulin occurred at a higher frequency than the allele A in both Sahiwal and Tharparkar breeds. The genotypic frequencies of AA, AB, and BB in Sahiwal and Tharparkar breeds were 0.031, 0.276, 0.693 and 0.023, 0.733, 0.244 respectively. Frequencies of A and B alleles were 0.17 and 0.83, and 0.39 and 0.61 in Sahiwal and Tharparkar breeds respectively. The Chi-square test results (at one degree of freedom at one per cent level) revealed that the Tharparkar population was not in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium as there was a continuous migration of animals in the herd studied, where as, the results are not significant for the Sahiwal population. Conclusion

  6. Owner perceived differences between mixed-breed and purebred dogs

    PubMed Central

    Turcsán, Borbála; Miklósi, Ádám; Kubinyi, Enikő

    2017-01-01

    Studies about the behaviours of mixed-breed dogs are rare, although mixed-breeds represent the majority of the world’s dog population. We have conducted two surveys to investigate the behavioural, demographic, and dog keeping differences between purebred and mixed-breed companion dogs. Questionnaire data were collected on a large sample of dogs living in Germany (N = 7,700 purebred dogs representing more than 200 breeds, and N = 7,691 mixed-breeds). We found that according to their owners, mixed-breeds were (1) less calm, (2) less sociable toward other dogs, and (3) showed more problematic behaviour than purebreds (p < 0.001 for all). Mixed-breeds and purebreds were similar in trainability and boldness scores. However, twelve out of 20 demographic and dog keeping factors differed between purebred and mixed-breed dogs, and two factors showed considerable (> 10%) differences: neutering was more frequent among mixed-breeds, and they were acquired at older ages than purebreds (p < 0.001 for both), which could result in the observed behaviour differences. After controlling for the distribution of the demographic and dog keeping factors, we found that mixed-breeds were (1) more trainable than purebreds, (2) less calm, and (3) showed more problematic behaviour than purebreds (p < 0.001 for all). We discuss that these differences at least partly might be due to selective forces. Our results suggest that instead of being the “average” dogs, mixed-breeds represent a special group with characteristic behavioural traits. PMID:28222103

  7. Is income breeding an appropriate construct for waterfowl?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Janke, Adam K.; Anteau, Michael J.; Markl, Nicholas; Stafford, Joshua D.

    2015-01-01

    Breeding birds use a range of nutrient accumulation and allocation strategies to meet the nutritional demands of clutch formation and incubation. On one end of the spectrum, capital breeders use stored nutrients acquired prior to clutch formation and incubation to sustain metabolism during reproduction, while on the opposite end, income breeders derive nutrients solely from exogenous sources on the breeding grounds. Blue-winged Teal (Anas discors) are an ideal candidate to test for adoption of an income strategy among migratory waterfowl because of their small body size, temperate breeding range, and timing of reproduction relative to pulses in nutrient availability within breeding habitats. We collected migrating and pre-breeding Blue-winged Teal (n = 110) during the warmest spring in over a century in the southern edge of the species’ breeding range, which produced ideal conditions to test for adoption of an income breeding strategy among migratory waterfowl. Regression analyses revealed that females accumulated protein and fat reserves early in follicle development and appeared to mobilize at least some reserves coincident with the onset of clutch formation. Accumulation and subsequent mobilization of nutrient reserves was inconsistent with adherence to an income breeding strategy and suggested breeding Blue-winged Teal used capital (albeit locally acquired) for reproduction. Our results add to existing knowledge on the ubiquity of endogenous nutrient reserve accumulation prior to and during reproduction by waterfowl, perhaps suggesting endogenous nutrient reserves are universally used for clutch formation or incubation to some degree. If indeed Blue-winged Teal and other waterfowl universally use capital for breeding, research and conservation efforts should shift from evaluating whether an income breeding strategy is used and focus on when and where necessary capital is acquired prior to clutch formation.

  8. Adaptation of Escherichia coli to glucose promotes evolvability in lactose.

    PubMed

    Phillips, Kelly N; Castillo, Gerardo; Wünsche, Andrea; Cooper, Tim F

    2016-02-01

    The selective history of a population can influence its subsequent evolution, an effect known as historical contingency. We previously observed that five of six replicate populations that were evolved in a glucose-limited environment for 2000 generations, then switched to lactose for 1000 generations, had higher fitness increases in lactose than populations started directly from the ancestor. To test if selection in glucose systematically increased lactose evolvability, we started 12 replay populations--six from a population subsample and six from a single randomly selected clone--from each of the six glucose-evolved founder populations. These replay populations and 18 ancestral populations were evolved for 1000 generations in a lactose-limited environment. We found that replay populations were initially slightly less fit in lactose than the ancestor, but were more evolvable, in that they increased in fitness at a faster rate and to higher levels. This result indicates that evolution in the glucose environment resulted in genetic changes that increased the potential of genotypes to adapt to lactose. Genome sequencing identified four genes--iclR, nadR, spoT, and rbs--that were mutated in most glucose-evolved clones and are candidates for mediating increased evolvability. Our results demonstrate that short-term selective costs during selection in one environment can lead to changes in evolvability that confer longer term benefits.

  9. The genotype-phenotype map of an evolving digital organism.

    PubMed

    Fortuna, Miguel A; Zaman, Luis; Ofria, Charles; Wagner, Andreas

    2017-02-01

    To understand how evolving systems bring forth novel and useful phenotypes, it is essential to understand the relationship between genotypic and phenotypic change. Artificial evolving systems can help us understand whether the genotype-phenotype maps of natural evolving systems are highly unusual, and it may help create evolvable artificial systems. Here we characterize the genotype-phenotype map of digital organisms in Avida, a platform for digital evolution. We consider digital organisms from a vast space of 10141 genotypes (instruction sequences), which can form 512 different phenotypes. These phenotypes are distinguished by different Boolean logic functions they can compute, as well as by the complexity of these functions. We observe several properties with parallels in natural systems, such as connected genotype networks and asymmetric phenotypic transitions. The likely common cause is robustness to genotypic change. We describe an intriguing tension between phenotypic complexity and evolvability that may have implications for biological evolution. On the one hand, genotypic change is more likely to yield novel phenotypes in more complex organisms. On the other hand, the total number of novel phenotypes reachable through genotypic change is highest for organisms with simple phenotypes. Artificial evolving systems can help us study aspects of biological evolvability that are not accessible in vastly more complex natural systems. They can also help identify properties, such as robustness, that are required for both human-designed artificial systems and synthetic biological systems to be evolvable.

  10. Loops and autonomy promote evolvability of ecosystem networks.

    PubMed

    Luo, Jianxi

    2014-09-29

    The structure of ecological networks, in particular food webs, determines their ability to evolve further, i.e. evolvability. The knowledge about how food web evolvability is determined by the structures of diverse ecological networks can guide human interventions purposefully to either promote or limit evolvability of ecosystems. However, the focus of prior food web studies was on stability and robustness; little is known regarding the impact of ecological network structures on their evolvability. To correlate ecosystem structure and evolvability, we adopt the NK model originally from evolutionary biology to generate and assess the ruggedness of fitness landscapes of a wide spectrum of model food webs with gradual variation in the amount of feeding loops and link density. The variation in network structures is controlled by linkage rewiring. Our results show that more feeding loops and lower trophic link density, i.e. higher autonomy of species, of food webs increase the potential for the ecosystem to generate heritable variations with improved fitness. Our findings allow the prediction of the evolvability of actual food webs according to their network structures, and provide guidance to enhancing or controlling the evolvability of specific ecosystems.

  11. The genotype-phenotype map of an evolving digital organism

    PubMed Central

    Zaman, Luis; Wagner, Andreas

    2017-01-01

    To understand how evolving systems bring forth novel and useful phenotypes, it is essential to understand the relationship between genotypic and phenotypic change. Artificial evolving systems can help us understand whether the genotype-phenotype maps of natural evolving systems are highly unusual, and it may help create evolvable artificial systems. Here we characterize the genotype-phenotype map of digital organisms in Avida, a platform for digital evolution. We consider digital organisms from a vast space of 10141 genotypes (instruction sequences), which can form 512 different phenotypes. These phenotypes are distinguished by different Boolean logic functions they can compute, as well as by the complexity of these functions. We observe several properties with parallels in natural systems, such as connected genotype networks and asymmetric phenotypic transitions. The likely common cause is robustness to genotypic change. We describe an intriguing tension between phenotypic complexity and evolvability that may have implications for biological evolution. On the one hand, genotypic change is more likely to yield novel phenotypes in more complex organisms. On the other hand, the total number of novel phenotypes reachable through genotypic change is highest for organisms with simple phenotypes. Artificial evolving systems can help us study aspects of biological evolvability that are not accessible in vastly more complex natural systems. They can also help identify properties, such as robustness, that are required for both human-designed artificial systems and synthetic biological systems to be evolvable. PMID:28241039

  12. Gene Essentiality Is a Quantitative Property Linked to Cellular Evolvability.

    PubMed

    Liu, Gaowen; Yong, Mei Yun Jacy; Yurieva, Marina; Srinivasan, Kandhadayar Gopalan; Liu, Jaron; Lim, John Soon Yew; Poidinger, Michael; Wright, Graham Daniel; Zolezzi, Francesca; Choi, Hyungwon; Pavelka, Norman; Rancati, Giulia

    2015-12-03

    Gene essentiality is typically determined by assessing the viability of the corresponding mutant cells, but this definition fails to account for the ability of cells to adaptively evolve to genetic perturbations. Here, we performed a stringent screen to assess the degree to which Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells can survive the deletion of ~1,000 individual "essential" genes and found that ~9% of these genetic perturbations could in fact be overcome by adaptive evolution. Our analyses uncovered a genome-wide gradient of gene essentiality, with certain essential cellular functions being more "evolvable" than others. Ploidy changes were prevalent among the evolved mutant strains, and aneuploidy of a specific chromosome was adaptive for a class of evolvable nucleoporin mutants. These data justify a quantitative redefinition of gene essentiality that incorporates both viability and evolvability of the corresponding mutant cells and will enable selection of therapeutic targets associated with lower risk of emergence of drug resistance.

  13. 9 CFR 151.10 - Recognition of additional breeds and books of record.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Recognition of additional breeds and... SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE ANIMAL BREEDS RECOGNITION OF BREEDS AND BOOKS OF RECORD OF PUREBRED ANIMALS Recognition of Breeds and Books of Record § 151.10 Recognition of additional breeds and books...

  14. 9 CFR 151.10 - Recognition of additional breeds and books of record.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Recognition of additional breeds and... SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE ANIMAL BREEDS RECOGNITION OF BREEDS AND BOOKS OF RECORD OF PUREBRED ANIMALS Recognition of Breeds and Books of Record § 151.10 Recognition of additional breeds and books...

  15. 9 CFR 151.10 - Recognition of additional breeds and books of record.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Recognition of additional breeds and... SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE ANIMAL BREEDS RECOGNITION OF BREEDS AND BOOKS OF RECORD OF PUREBRED ANIMALS Recognition of Breeds and Books of Record § 151.10 Recognition of additional breeds and books...

  16. 9 CFR 151.10 - Recognition of additional breeds and books of record.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Recognition of additional breeds and... SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE ANIMAL BREEDS RECOGNITION OF BREEDS AND BOOKS OF RECORD OF PUREBRED ANIMALS Recognition of Breeds and Books of Record § 151.10 Recognition of additional breeds and books...

  17. Arctic sea ice a major determinant in Mandt's black guillemot movement and distribution during non-breeding season.

    PubMed

    Divoky, G J; Douglas, D C; Stenhouse, I J

    2016-09-01

    Mandt's black guillemot (Cepphus grylle mandtii) is one of the few seabirds associated in all seasons with Arctic sea ice, a habitat that is changing rapidly. Recent decreases in summer ice have reduced breeding success and colony size of this species in Arctic Alaska. Little is known about the species' movements and distribution during the nine month non-breeding period (September-May), when changes in sea ice extent and composition are also occurring and predicted to continue. To examine bird movements and the seasonal role of sea ice to non-breeding Mandt's black guillemots, we deployed and recovered (n = 45) geolocators on individuals at a breeding colony in Arctic Alaska during 2011-2015. Black guillemots moved north to the marginal ice zone (MIZ) in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas immediately after breeding, moved south to the Bering Sea during freeze-up in December, and wintered in the Bering Sea January-April. Most birds occupied the MIZ in regions averaging 30-60% sea ice concentration, with little seasonal variation. Birds regularly roosted on ice in all seasons averaging 5 h d(-1), primarily at night. By using the MIZ, with its roosting opportunities and associated prey, black guillemots can remain in the Arctic during winter when littoral waters are completely covered by ice.

  18. Breeding biology and nesting success of palila

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pletschet, S.M.; Kelly, J.F.

    1990-01-01

    We studied the breeding biology of Palila (Loxioides bailleui ) at 85 nests from 20 April to 14 September 1988. Eggs were laid over a 139-day period and incubation averaged 16.6 days. The female incubated 85.2% of daylight hours and males fed incubating females. Modal clutch size was 2 (x super(-) = 2.0) and an average of 1.4 nestlings fledged per successful nest. Nestlings were in the nest an average of 25.3 days. Both females and males fed nestlings with the rate of feeding decreasing as the nestlings grew older. Palila nesting success was 25%, reduced primarily by hatching failure and depredation of nestlings. Hatching failure, due to inviable eggs or desertion, occurred in 41% of nests with eggs (55% of nest mortality). Egg depredation was rare (5% of nest mortality). Inbreeding and low food availability are postulated as the major causes for poor hatching success.

  19. National water policy: Shifts continue

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreau, David H.

    1995-07-01

    In recent years national water policy has continued to follow a path toward decentralization and greater reliance on nonstructural means for solving problems. Neither the Bush administration nor the Clinton administration have sought fundamental changes to general water policies that evolved at the federal level from the period of rapid change in the 1970's and the less volatile but still active period before 1988. Yet, significant changes have occurred through the federal appropriation process, executive decisions, and innovations at the state and local levels. Important changes have occurred in floodplain management strategies, water transfers and water banking, urban water use efficiency, and the distribution of financial burdens among federal, state and local governments. Major changes in surface and groundwater policies and management of public water supplies could occur in the spate of water and environmental policies that are up for reauthorization in 1995.

  20. Habitat Suitability Index Models: American eider (breeding)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Blumton, Arlene K.; Owen, Ray B.; Krohn, William B.

    1988-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The common eider (Somateria mollissima) consists of five subspecies; four are found in North America (Palmer 1976). Six management populations of common eiders have recently been defined in eastern Canada and the United States (Reed and Erskine 1986). The American edier (S. mollissima dresseri), of which three populations are recognized (Reed and Erskine 1986), is the southernmost subspecies and the focus of this paper. The common eider is a member of the order Anseriformes, family Anatidae, and the tribe Mergini. A seabird of the northern latitudes of the world, the common eider is the largest duck of North America, ranging in weight from 1.2 to 2.8 kg and having a total length from 53.3 to 68.6 cm (Bellrose 1980). The American subspecies averages 2.0 kg and 61.0 cm for males, and 1.5 kg and 57.0 cm for females (Bellrose 1980). The drake is distinctly patterned,, having a white back and breast and a black belly and sides. The smaller female is brown and heavily barred with dark brown. Both sexes have a leathery extension of the bill which forms a Y-shaped frontal shield that reaches almost to the eyes. Maine, which supports part of the Atlantic population of common eiders (Reed and Erskine 1986), is the only major eider breeding population in the lower 48 States. American eiders are colonial nesters and use a variety of nesting sites, but they prefer relatively small, uninhabited islands (Mendall 1976). The coastal islands of Maine, which are essential to the eider's life cycle, are increasingly subjected to recreation and development, creating potential disturbances to eider breeding colonies. During recent years, aesthetic and sporting interest in eiders has increased. Sea ducks in Maine are experiencing increased hunting pressure. Compared to hunting seasons and bag limits for inland ducks, sea duck seasons and limits are liberal (Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife [MDIFW] 1983).

  1. Chewing rates among domestic dog breeds

    PubMed Central

    Gerstner, Geoffrey E.; Cooper, Meghan; Helvie, Peter

    2010-01-01

    The mammalian masticatory rhythm is produced by a brainstem timing network. The rhythm is relatively fixed within individual animals but scales allometrically with body mass (Mb) across species. It has been hypothesized that sensory feedback and feed-forward adjust the rhythm to match the jaw's natural resonance frequency, with allometric scaling being an observable consequence. However, studies performed with adult animals show that the rhythm is not affected by jaw mass manipulations, indicating that either developmental or evolutionary mechanisms are required for allometry to become manifest. The present study was performed to tease out the relative effects of development versus natural selection on chewing rate allometry. Thirty-one dog breeds and 31 mass-matched non-domestic mammalian species with a range in Mb from ∼2 kg to 50 kg were studied. Results demonstrated that the chewing rhythm did not scale with Mb among dog breeds (R=0.299, P>0.10) or with jaw length (Lj) (R=0.328, P>0.05). However, there was a significant relationship between the chewing rhythm and Mb among the non-domestic mammals (R=0.634, P<0.001). These results indicate that scaling is not necessary in the adult animal. We conclude that the central timing network and related sensorimotor systems may be necessary for rhythm generation but they do not explain the 1/3rd to 1/4th allometric scaling observed among adult mammals. The rhythm of the timing network is either adjusted to the physical parameters of the jaw system during early development only, is genetically determined independently of the jaw system or is uniquely hard-wired among dogs and laboratory rodents. PMID:20543125

  2. Evolving water science in the Anthropocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savenije, H. H. G.; Hoekstra, A. Y.; van der Zaag, P.

    2014-01-01

    This paper reviews the changing relation between human beings and water since the Industrial Revolution, a period that has been called the Anthropocene because of the unprecedented scale at which humans have altered the planet during this time. We show how the rapidly changing world urges us to continuously improve our understanding of the complex interactions between humans and the water system. The paper starts by demonstrating that hydrology and the science of managing water resources have played key roles in human and economic development throughout history; yet these roles have often been marginalised or obscured. Knowledge of hydrology and water resources engineering and management helped to transform the landscape, and thus also the very hydrology within catchments itself. It is only fairly recent that water experts have become conscious of such mechanisms, exemplified by several concepts that try to incorporate them - integrated water resources management, eco-hydrology, socio-hydrology. We have reached a stage at which a more systemic understanding of scale interdependencies can inform the sustainable governance of water systems, using new concepts like precipitation sheds, virtual water transfers, water footprints, and water value flow.

  3. Evolving water science in the Anthropocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savenije, H. H. G.; Hoekstra, A. Y.; van der Zaag, P.

    2013-06-01

    This paper reviews the changing relation between man and water since the industrial revolution, the period that has been called the Anthropocene because of the unprecedented scale at which humans have altered the planet. We show how the rapidly changing reality urges us to continuously improve our understanding of the complex interactions between man and the water system. The paper starts with demonstrating that hydrology and the science of water resources management have played key roles in human and economic development throughout history; yet these roles have often been marginalised or obscured. Knowledge on hydrology and water resources engineering and management helped to transform the landscape, and thus also the very hydrology within catchments itself. It is only fairly recent that water experts have become self-conscious of such mechanisms, exemplified by several concepts that try to internalise them (integrated water resources management, eco-hydrology, socio-hydrology). We have reached a stage where a more systemic understanding of scale interdependencies can inform the sustainable governance of water systems, using new concepts like precipitationsheds, virtual water transfers, water footprint and water value flow.

  4. Evolving ideas about the male refractory period.

    PubMed

    Turley, Kenneth R; Rowland, David L

    2013-08-01

    The male refractory period (MRP) continues to be a topic of discussion and debate within the field of sexual medicine. To date explanations rely on central descending (efferent) influences involving specific neurotransmitter systems. Herein we explore the issue of the male refractory period, identifying problems with current explanations, specifying the parameters of an adequate model, and suggesting possible mechanisms mediating this phenomenon. We review the literature regarding existing explanations for the MRP and look to other systems of physiological regulation that might provide a model for the conceptualization of the MRP. Our approach differs from traditional explanations in that it emphasizes the possible roles of various peripheral, rather than central, feedback (afferent) systems that affect peripheral autonomic functioning and response. Yet our approach is consistent with other peripheral regulatory feedback systems controlling autonomic response related to such processes as heart rate, respiration, and gut motility. Although direct empirical research supporting our approach is lacking, sufficient evidence exists to support the idea that such processes are not only possible but likely with respect to the male refractory period. We suggest several lines of research that might provide empirical support for this approach.

  5. Visceral Leishmaniasis in Ethiopia: An Evolving Disease

    PubMed Central

    Leta, Samson; Dao, Thi Ha Thanh; Mesele, Frehiwot; Alemayehu, Gezahegn

    2014-01-01

    Visceral leishmaniasis (also known as kala-azar) is classified as one of the most neglected tropical diseases. It is becoming a growing health problem in Ethiopia, with endemic areas that are continually spreading. The annual burden of visceral leishmaniasis (VL) in Ethiopia is estimated to be between 4,500 and 5,000 cases, and the population at risk is more than 3.2 million. There has been a change in the epidemiology of VL in Ethiopia. Over the last decades, almost all cases and outbreaks of VL were reported from arid and semi-arid parts of the country; however, recent reports indicated the introduction of this disease into the highlands. Migration of labourers to and from endemic areas, climatic and environmental changes, and impaired immunity due to HIV/AIDS and malnutrition resulted in the change of VL epidemiology. HIV spurs the spread of VL by increasing the risk of progression from asymptomatic infection towards full VL. Conversely, VL accelerates the onset of AIDS. In Ethiopia, VL epidemiology remains complex because of the diversity of risk factors involved, and its control is becoming an increasing challenge. This paper reviews the changes in epidemiology of VL in Ethiopia and discusses some of the possible explanations for these changes. The prospects for novel approaches to VL control are discussed, as are the current and future challenges facing Ethiopia's public health development program. PMID:25188253

  6. Wolf nipple measurements as indices of age and breeding status

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mech, L.D.; Meier, T.J.; Seal, U.S.

    1993-01-01

    We measured nipple sizes of 29 captive wolves (Canis lupus), of known breeding histories, throughout the year and tested distinctions among various known breeding statuses of 20 wild wolves examined in northeastern Minnesota from May through September. For ca. 8 mo of the year only breeders and nonbreeders can be classified. Distinctions between current and former breeders were not reliable.

  7. Tilting at windmills: 20 years of Hippeastrum breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Hippeastrum Herbert, amaryllis, has yielded popular large-flowered hybrids over a 200-year breeding history, with the Netherlands and South Africa currently dominating the market. The USDA breeding program is now almost ten years old, built upon a ten-year previous history at the University of Flori...

  8. Developing resources for diploid potato breeding and genetics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The cultivated potato (Solanum tuberosum Gp. tuberosum) is an asexually propagated cross-pollinated autotetraploid crop, for which breeding methodology has not changed in 100 years. Current methods for breeding potato cultivars are genetically inefficient due to polyploidy, resource intensive due to...

  9. The contribution of traditional potato breeding to scientific potato improvement

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Conventional potato breeding refers to development of new cultivars from sexual crosses followed by clonal propagation and selection. Nearly all new varieties of potato still emerge from this process free from modern technologies of gene insertion. Conventional breeding remains the most important ...

  10. Short communication: casein haplotype variability in sicilian dairy goat breeds.

    PubMed

    Gigli, I; Maizon, D O; Riggio, V; Sardina, M T; Portolano, B

    2008-09-01

    In the Mediterranean region, goat milk production is an important economic activity. In the present study, 4 casein genes were genotyped in 5 Sicilian goat breeds to 1) identify casein haplotypes present in the Argentata dell'Etna, Girgentana, Messinese, Derivata di Siria, and Maltese goat breeds; and 2) describe the structure of the Sicilian goat breeds based on casein haplotypes and allele frequencies. In a sample of 540 dairy goats, 67 different haplotypes with frequency >or=0.01 and 27 with frequency >or=0.03 were observed. The most common CSN1S1-CSN2-CSN1S2-CSN3 haplotype for Derivata di Siria and Maltese was FCFB (0.17 and 0.22, respectively), whereas for Argentata dell'Etna, Girgentana and Messinese was ACAB (0.06, 0.23, and 0.10, respectively). According to the haplotype reconstruction, Argentata dell'Etna, Girgentana, and Messinese breeds presented the most favorable haplotype for cheese production, because the casein concentration in milk of these breeds might be greater than that in Derivata di Siria and Maltese breeds. Based on a cluster analysis, the breeds formed 2 main groups: Derivata di Siria, and Maltese in one group, and Argentata dell'Etna and Messinese in the other; the Girgentana breed was between these groups but closer to the latter.

  11. Selection methods in forage breeding: a quantitative appraisal

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Forage breeding can be extraordinarily complex because of the number of species, perenniality, mode of reproduction, mating system, and the genetic correlation for some traits evaluated in spaced plants vs. performance under cultivation. Aiming to compare eight forage breeding methods for direct sel...

  12. 50 CFR 15.26 - Approval of cooperative breeding programs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS WILD BIRD CONSERVATION ACT Permits and Approval of Cooperative Breeding Programs § 15... may approve cooperative breeding programs. Such approval will allow individuals to import exotic birds... exotic bird(s) to be imported or to be covered under the program, including the common and...

  13. Status of genetic diversity of U. S. dairy goat breeds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic diversity underpins the livestock breeders’ ability to improve the production potential of their livestock. Therefore, it is important to periodically assess genetic diversity within a breed. Such an analysis was conducted on U.S. dairy goat breeds and this article is an overview of that wo...

  14. Acceleration of peanut breeding programs by molecular marker assisted selection

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Peanut breeding has played a significant role in yield increases and disease control. Conventional breeding focuses on field selection and phenotypic analysis and it typically takes 12-15 years before a new cultivar can be released. Molecular markers developed from sequencing data can be of great ...

  15. Status of genetic diversity of U. S. dairy goat breeds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic diversity underpins the livestock breeders’ ability to improve the production potential of their livestock. Therefore, it is important to periodically assess genetic diversity within a breed. Such an analysis was conducted on U.S. dairy goat breeds: Alpine, LaMancha, Nigerian Dwarf, Nubian, ...

  16. Sugar Beet Breeding - Where are We Going from Here?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    USDA-Agricultural Research Service plant breeders generally do pre-breeding, but today we will talk a little about what the future holds for new varieties and directions in commercial plant breeding. This presentation is my vision, not a presentation from a seed company, and we will talk about trend...

  17. Breeding return times and abundance in capture-recapture models.

    PubMed

    Pledger, Shirley; Baker, Edward; Scribner, Kim

    2013-12-01

    For many long-lived animal species, individuals do not breed every year, and are often not accessible during non-breeding periods. Individuals exhibit site fidelity if they return to the same breeding colony or spawning ground when they breed. If capture and recapture is only possible at the breeding site, temporary emigration models are used to allow for only a subset of the animals being present in any given year. Most temporary emigration models require the use of the robust sampling design, and their focus is usually on probabilities of annual survival and of transition between breeding and non-breeding states. We use lake sturgeon (Acipenser fulvescens) data from a closed population where only a simple (one sample per year) sampling scheme is possible, and we also wish to estimate abundance as well as sex-specific survival and breeding return time probabilities. By adding return time parameters to the Schwarz-Arnason version of the Jolly-Seber model, we have developed a new likelihood-based model which yields plausible estimates of abundance, survival, transition and return time parameters. An important new finding from investigation of the model is the overestimation of abundance if a Jolly-Seber model is used when Markovian temporary emigration is present.

  18. The dwarf saltwort (Salicornia bigelovii Torr.): Evaluation of breeding populations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Breeding populations of the dwarf saltwort (Salicornia bigelovii Torr. [Chenopodiaceae]) have been evaluated under high seawater salinity (45 dS m-1) for phenotypic, morphometric, biomass and seed traits in an effort to select suitable families and genotypes within families for breeding purposes and...

  19. Occasional cooperative breeding in birds and the robustness of comparative analyses concerning the evolution of cooperative breeding.

    PubMed

    Griesser, Michael; Suzuki, Toshitaka N

    2016-01-01

    Cooperative breeding is a widespread and intense form of cooperation, in which individuals help raise offspring that are not their own. This behaviour is particularly well studied in birds, using both long-term and comparative studies that have provided insights into the evolution of reproductive altruism. In most cooperatively breeding species, helpers are offspring that remain with their parents beyond independency and help in the raising of younger siblings. However, many cooperatively breeding species are poorly studied, and in 152 species, this behaviour only has been observed infrequently (i.e., occasional cooperative breeding). Here we argue that the parental care mode of these 152 species needs to be treated with caution, as factors associated with occasional cooperative breeding may differ from those associated with "regular" cooperative breeding. In most cooperatively breeding species, helpers provide alloparental care at the nests of their parents or close relatives; however, only in one occasionally cooperatively breeding species do offspring remain into the next breeding season with their parents. Accordingly, different factors are likely to be associated with regular and occasional cooperative breeding. The latter behaviour resembles interspecific feeding (i.e., individuals feed offspring of another species), which occurs when birds lose their brood and begin feeding at a nearby nest, or when birds mistakenly feed at another nest. Thus, we advise researchers to exclude occasional cooperative breeders in comparative analyses until their status is clarified, or to categorize them separately or according to the typically observed parental care mode. This approach will increase the robustness of comparative analyses and thereby improve our understanding of factors that drive the evolution of cooperative breeding.

  20. NASA's Space Launch System: An Evolving Capability for Exploration An Evolving Capability for Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Creech, Stephen D.; Crumbly, Christopher M.; Robinson, Kimerly F.

    2016-01-01

    A foundational capability for international human deep-space exploration, NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) vehicle represents a new spaceflight infrastructure asset, creating opportunities for mission profiles and space systems that cannot currently be executed. While the primary purpose of SLS, which is making rapid progress towards initial launch readiness in two years, will be to support NASA's Journey to Mars, discussions are already well underway regarding other potential utilization of the vehicle's unique capabilities. In its initial Block 1 configuration, capable of launching 70 metric tons (t) to low Earth orbit (LEO), SLS is capable of propelling the Orion crew vehicle to cislunar space, while also delivering small CubeSat-class spacecraft to deep-space destinations. With the addition of a more powerful upper stage, the Block 1B configuration of SLS will be able to deliver 105 t to LEO and enable more ambitious human missions into the proving ground of space. This configuration offers opportunities for launching co-manifested payloads with the Orion crew vehicle, and a class of secondary payloads, larger than today's CubeSats. Further upgrades to the vehicle, including advanced boosters, will evolve its performance to 130 t in its Block 2 configuration. Both Block 1B and Block 2 also offer the capability to carry 8.4- or 10-m payload fairings, larger than any contemporary launch vehicle. With unmatched mass-lift capability, payload volume, and C3, SLS not only enables spacecraft or mission designs currently impossible with contemporary EELVs, it also offers enhancing benefits, such as reduced risk, operational costs and/or complexity, shorter transit time to destination or launching large systems either monolithically or in fewer components. This paper will discuss both the performance and capabilities of Space Launch System as it evolves, and the current state of SLS utilization planning.